The School Library Book Budget Project: Empowering Readers through Responsibility, Support, and Trust

By Micki Uppena and Matt Renwick “We should purchase a couple of books on ADHD, so that I can share them with my friends and they can understand what it’s like to be me.” This comment, overheard during a conversation among fourth graders, is a microcosm of the outcomes hoped for when students are empowered

Bring on the Manga!

By Penny Kittle and Meg Murphy We have a group of 5th and 6th graders at Conway Elementay School working on what they want to order. They are reviewing titles and thinking about where the Manga Collection will go… how they will teach other kids how to read Manga, and most importantly, why they believe Manga is an

“The Red Moon is Between Mars and Cleveland”

By Sara Holbrook and Michael Salinger Red moons are rare, occurring only once or twice a year when the moon is totally eclipsed by the earth. Hidden in darkness, the full moon glows in crimson luminescence for a few hours, a delicious astonishment set into the glittered night sky. We toast them with our cameras

El Nido Elementary School’s Journey to Book Abundance

By Sharon Zinke What an amazing journey this is proving to be! When we started this school year, El Nido Elementary School had completely dismantled their rundown and limited school library so they could start over with brand new furniture and shelves and more up-to-date books. By November 2021, the new furniture had arrived but

Follow Up: El Nido Elementary School

By Sharon Zinke We began the year with a huge challenge ahead of us. We decided to focus on choice and access for this school year since there was a severe shortage of books and book access in the school and it seemed that the language arts period was much more focused on published lessons

Kindergartners and Third Graders Discover Their Reading Identities and Book Joy

Our Literacy Champion Islah Tauheed worked with two teachers, third grade teacher Melissa Bowman and kindergarten teacher Elana Vela; over the course of the school year, each child chose six books to take home, read, and keep. We interviewed Elana at the end of the school year to learn more about her experience helping her

Family Literacy Night

By Lynsey Burkins “Mrs. Burkins! Mrs. Burkins! Last night was magical. My mom loved our family reading night.” Brayden, age 8 Holding a family literacy night can provide a meaningful experience for students as well as their families. It is a unique way to bring families into the reading lives of their children. One key

Trusting Young Learners

By Lori Oczkus Instilling a love of reading through choice, agency, and time to talk about books The students and teachers in Paradise have experienced a series of tragedies and challenges the past few years including the horrific Camp Fire which destroyed their school and entire town. On November 8, 2018, the deadliest and most

Reading as Lifework

By JoEllen McCarthy The central and most important goal of reading instruction is to foster a love of reading. Linda Gambrell, Distinguished Professor of Education, Clemson University The most powerful way to promote independent reading is to provide all children access to books they can and want to read. When we invest in books, we

Community Literacy: Access, Representation and Choice

By Franki Sibberson Access, representation and choice are all critical for children to have positive experiences with books. Future Ready Columbus (FRC) is a collective impact organization that leads implementation of the county-wide kindergarten readiness plan, Future Ready by 5, to support children prenatal through age five, so they track for lifelong success. With grant

The Multi-Dimensional Nature of Reading

By Dr. Cecilia Espinosa Samara Dual Language Community School, a vibrant bilingual learning community located in The Bronx, NY, is easily one of the most professionally sophisticated elementary schools in the United States. Samara offers a Spanish/English Dual Language PreK – 5th grade program. Each grade level has a team of teachers; one teacher teaches

Cyber Biblioteca: The Urbita Family Literacy Project

By Gabriella DeLeon-DeHaan A library is also a place where love begins Rudolfo Anaya It wasn’t until I was in college that I was introduced to authors who shared my culture, such as Rudolfo Anaya.  I grew up in the isolated Mojave Desert town of Barstow, California in a time before there was easy access

Read it Again, Mama!

by Nawal Qarooni This afternoon, once backpacks were piled in the hallway baskets and lunchboxes were dismantled, after steaming quesadillas and apple slices with assorted nut butters, I re-read two of Oge Mora’s books with my two youngest girls, Eloisa and Ezzat. I love when my kids pair off and I get two-to-one Mama time,

Portrait of a Super Reader!

By Nawal Qarooni with Ehsan Casiano Becoming a reader has as much to do with developing a reading identity as acquiring any predetermined set of skills.  Frank Serafini All four of my kids love to read, even the two youngest who glean information from pictures alone, but Ehsan strikes me as an especially Super Reader.

Third Graders at Aspire Charter School, East Palo Alto, California

Equity and social justice are inseparable from developing the agency to evaluate and choose your own reading material. The benefits of book joy are immeasurable. A rich reading life that is deeply and personally satisfying is often the key to a healthier, stronger, and more fulfilling life. Three of our third grade classrooms at Aspire