Monday, March 11, 2013

Encouraging Reading - Book Bingo!

How do you encourage your students to read at home? After reading Teacher Wife's post on the 100 Book Challenge (which I think is an awesome idea, by the way) I thought I would share what I do to encourage reading at home.

I want my students to love reading, which is great because they already do. But I also want my students to be exposed to and experiment a variety of books. So in comes...Book Bingo!!

It's actually not my original idea, I had the help of Super Teachers Worksheets. But I think it's pretty awesome! They have different bingo boards for different grade levels but here is what the generic one looks like:
Click on the image to get to it!
So I stick this in the kids' MONKEY folders at the beginning of the school year. I explain to the students that this is completely optional. I don't make my students do this to avoid complaints about extra work, but I do encourage them to do it. And of course, there is a rewards system for it!

The kids can only get one bookmark per book bingo card.
Basically, the students work at their own pace. When they finish one of the items on their book bingo board, they put their MONKEY folder on my desk. I check their book bingo board and give them their prize. The bookmark is pretty self explanatory. The stickers for on the students' individual sticker charts which is connected to the clip chart in my room. Lastly, the book is ordered from Scholastic using the points I get from parent orders. Once an entire board is completed, I give the kid the month's Scholastic catalogs to look through. The kid then circles three books he/she wants and gives the catalogs back to me. I choose one of the circled books to order. 

The kids love getting their free book! I'll admit only a small percentage of students in my class actually actively work on completing their book bingo cards. But the students who do partake in this, they go crazy! Last year I had a student who completed three cards within 4 months. This year I have a student who has completed around five. 

Although it doesn't get everyone going, I still love it and definitely would continue doing it. Next year, I'm thinking of also using Teacher Wife's 100 book challenge to go with this. It would be great!

What do you do to encourage reading at home? What about exposure to different genres and authors?

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