Wednesday, March 30, 2016

#hacklearning: the book nook

Problem: Kids aren't reading.
Hack: Flood your classroom and school with books via The Book Nook.

You've all heard the research - kids not reading or wanting to read is nothing new. We all know that studies show the lower the income level, the fewer books around - in student homes, and in many cases where school funding is based on property taxes, in schools too. How then, can we get kids reading if we don't have books?

The Hack: Create a Book Nook that gives free books to everyone.

Picture your favorite bookstore.... Comfy arm chairs, tables where you can work, and soft music playing in the background. And, the best part? You're surrounded by all the books you love - the picture books, the YA Lit, maybe some great books on ways to eat cleaner and some trashy gossip columns with our fave celebs on teh cover. There's a fireplace roaring in the corner, and they're serving up your favorite Peppermint Mocha.

This is a Book Nook, only in our school's version, the books are free to take... not to buy or to check out and return, but to take for as long as the students would like.

As a Literacy Coach who has experience in two different districts, and with two different philosophies, I can say that without a doubt, the schools that flood their campuses with books see students through to that Readerly Life that our Reading Worskhop idols describe to us. Perhaps your principals don't hand out $1500 in classroom books to every teacher on your campus (TY D100!), but that doesn't mean you can't get lots of books in the hands of all of the students in your class or school.

As they mentioned in the book, your first instinct might be to think that you don't have the space for A Book Nook. Don't go there just yet. Start in your classroom. Do you have bookshelves? Great! Let's work on getting more books on them.

All we have to do is curate a collection of books to put in use for students in your classroom or school. Have you tried these options?

  • Reach out to your family and friends for donations to start.
  • Utilize the power of facebook and search for groups in your city. For example, in my neighborhood of Chicago, there is a group called Bucktown Community News. Just two weeks ago I posted asking for donations for our Family Literacy Night, and got at least a dozen replies! For your Book Nook, post to your neighbors asking for donations of books. Barnes and Gonzales recommend that you don't get super specific - share grade level expectations, but then take everything. You can sort through and keep what you want, donate the rest! 
  • Similar Idea: Post an ad on Craig's List.
  • Check out yard sales, used book stores, and the public library.
  • Write or call local businesses asking for donations - books that they have purchased for you or a check for teachers to purchase books they need. 
  • Make it a homework assignment to your students: Find a book to donate to The Book Nook!
After you get a good collection of books to start, then begin to build your Book Nook. Barnes and Gonzales recommend creating a team, including students if you're in a middle or high school, to help manage this space and put in the work to keep things orderly and running smoothly. This team of students can reach out to the larger student body to help brand this Book Nook - maybe you want to call it your Little Lending Library or something else way more creative than that. Student input will build buy-in!

You'll need to find a space for this Book Nook, but think outside of the box! What school has an extra little nook around, unused? Not many, if I had to guess. So, think about large closets, or even a hallway that could be reimagined.

Barnes and Gonzales go on to describe full implementation in the chapter, and also how to overcome obstacles. Pick up a copy of their book if you love this idea as much as I do, and plus, you're going to learn about the other 9 hacks as well. Until then, get a preview of them by way of the #D100bloggerPD posts:

Hack 8: The Book Nook - Here and Now! :-)
Hack 9: The Glass Classroom - Kayla
Hack 10: The 360 Spreadsheet - Coming Soon!

Be sure to follow our blogging group on twitter, by searching our hashtag #D100BloggerPD. If you like what you've read here, follow my blog via facebook, Instagram, or Bloglovin!

And... check back next Monday for Kayla's post about Hack 9: The Glass Classroom.

Later, Hackers!

1 comment:

  1. That's interesting a genuine amount is suggested because of it of beneficial stunts for folks. Be thankful a full whole lot designed for discussing your site.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...