Happy Birthday to Me!
Over the past two years, I have seen more of my students carrying e-readers, so the most recent NYTimes article “E-Readers Catch Younger Eyes and Go in Backpacks” did not surprise me. Last year, as a sixth grade teacher, I had 1-2 students in each class who asked permission to use their e-readers during independent reading (Kindles and Nooks). They always caused a buzz the first time they came in, with other students (and even teachers!) crowding around, oohing and ahhing. After that, they were just another format in the classroom.
This year in high school, I started the year with about 6% of my class using e-readers (mostly Kindles). After Christmas vacation, I had an even larger percentage using Kindles, iPads, and Nooks. I think I am up to around 10-12% of my class using e-readers. I do notice more of my students reading the classics offered for free download, but that could also be a result of my 40 Book Reading Challenge, which requires that they read 3 canon classics. However, the e-readers make it easier for my students to access the classics. And this might be crazy, but I also think my students download the classics because a lot of them lack covers or consist of solid color covers. There is not “judging a book by its cover” because it doesn’t really have one. Thus, they go into the book without any preconceived notions about it being boring. Not for nothing, but so many of the classics have atrocious covers that do not attract modern teen readers. E-readers take that out of the equation!
I am also seeing them read new books, downloading recommendations from friends and books that I booktalk in class. They also pass the e-readers around, letting friends borrow them to read books.
I’m still a holdout. I use my iPad to carry books on vacation, but otherwise I stick to paper copies. I can’t put e-copies in my classroom library. :) However, I am a fan of anything that gets kids reading, so keep buying your kids those e-readers! And publishers, make your newest YA and middle grade titles available as e-books. If you sell it, they will buy it!
Apologies for the extended blog break. While I figured I would be posting only sporadically in June due to the typical “end of the year” cleanup, it intensified beyond my preparations. But school ended this week, I ran around like a nut finishing up some other plans, and now I finally have settled into “summer”. This week I am diving into my summer reading, diving back into blogging, and getting ready for next year!
Time Reading: 10ish hours?
Books completed: 8
Time Blogging/Social Media: 3.5 hours
Pages Read: 1337
Completed book list: The Strange Case of Origami Yoda, The Jaguar Stones, Book One: Middleworld, This Is Me From Now On , Shakespeare Bats Cleanup, The Hive Detectives: Chronicle of a Honey Bee Catastrophe (Scientists in the Field Series), The Kite Fighters, Seaglass Summer, Whaling Season: A Year in the Life of an Arctic Whale Scientist (Scientists in the Field Series)
I got my approval today to attend BEA on Wednesday! I know there is a Kidlit drink night that night, and I plan to stop by, but who else will be around during the day? What is a “can’t miss”? I haven’t even looked at the schedule yet…..
My eleven-year old sister is too much like me. This is the text message she sent me at 10pm. “Don’t tell mom cause I’m supposed to be in bed right now, but do u know where they sell cheap book lights? Flashlights are too hard 2 hold & read at the same time so I need 1 that clips onto the page. Or do you have one? Cause I read at night.”
Needless to say, I just ordered her a booklight and it’s on its way. I told her not to tell Mom.
For those of you who don’t know, I teach in NJ. The state budget is in dire straits and education is taking the hardest hit under our new governor. As a result of the awful budget situation, I received my RIF letter on Friday. I’m staying positive and hoping that I am brought back after this all shakes out, but I am also drafting various contingency plans. I can’t imagine not teaching, so I am crossing my fingers that there is a spot for me come September.
However, today was an amazing day, spent with my best friends from college, their husbands, dogs, and kids. We went to Ag Field Day at our alma mater and it was amazing. Thank goodness for good friends! And cute babies. :)