My Happy Time


My Happy Time

I know I have said it before here, but Tuesday afternoons are really my happy time. It does not matter how the rest of the day has been, at 2:45 it is all different. At 2:45 it is time for Book Love- and afterschool activity with 31 students in grades 2-5. Today I knew I wanted to share some of the Kate diCamillo interviews that John Schu had put on his fabulous website, because TODAY is the day that her new book comes out. The third graders in the group have all heard Because of Winn-Dixie  read aloud this year, the fourth graders have heard Tiger Rising, and all of them are familiar with my love for Kate diCamillo’s writing. A few weeks ago we watched the book trailer for Raymie Nightingale , so the stage had been set. After watching a few of the videos I talked briefly to the students about April being Poetry Month in the US and pointed out the poetry boxes they could find in the room. I then asked them to think about who in their life talks books with them- who they like to share books with, recommend books to, get recommendations from and more. I pointed out that people who talk about books read more and are better readers. Then I set them loose.

For the next hour it was my happy time- recommending books, looking at books with kids, watching them as they read and write. Students shared their projects: two boys were working on making trading cards and a trading card book for the book that they are writing together, some were making stories and cards for friends, others were passing books back and forth. Two boys came to me right away to ask me to send the video links to them- they wanted to watch the videos again at home and share them with their teacher. One of my happiest moments was watching one boy in particular reading. For this boy reading is not easy, but after weeks of encouraging him and putting various books within his reach he now easily finds books that he loves (in fact he asked me to order the next book in a series a few weeks ago and now each week he asks if it is in yet). There really is no greater joy than helping students fall in love with reading and writing (well, there was the bonus of finding that one of the lovelies had tucked a picture for me inside my laptop after they had all gone home).

What a great way to spend an hour each Tuesday.Ah, Book Love! (Forgive me for being repetitious- I really love this time).

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