It’s always great to introduce your students to new books. There are so many books out there – different kinds of formats, different genres – that the must be something out there for virtually everyone! As teachers, we can help students find books that fit their interests and reading levels, perhaps even exposing them to options they hadn’t even considered before.
Create a List
Figure out what you want to recommend – what would be appropriate for your students. I did this with students ranging from 2nd grade to 8th grade, so I had a wide breadth of options:
I included children’s books, middle-grade books, and a couple young adult books.
I included three formats: chapter books, novels, and comic books. You may choose to include non-fiction books as well.
Of course, there was a range in genres, from comedy to fantasy, from sci-fi to romance.
Your selection may be similar in its scope, or you might narrow your selection if your students are closer in skill level and interests. You’ll probably start the list with books you’re already familiar with, but you may also want to do some research to find popular or critically-acclaimed books for the student market.
I’d recommend somewhere between 12 and 20 books (too many, and students become overwhelmed; also each recommendation looses value as more are added). Also, consider recommending series with the hope that if students like the first book they read, they’ll continue reading more in the series without needing you to recommend more books.
Display Your Recommendations
If you’ve got the space, create a board in your classroom or in the hallway for your recommendations. For each series, I had the following:
Image of one of the covers
Summary (a short paragraph)
# of books in the series
Name of book to start with
I placed the info for each series on colored construction paper, then spread them out across the board.
Encourage your students to check out the board. I even took time out of my class during which students brought their notebooks to the board so they could jot down a series or three that they would be interested in reading.