Book tasting at John Lewis Childs School

Book tasting at John Lewis Childs School
John Lewis Childs School fifth-graders read summaries of a variety of books before selecting one to read in their literature circle. (Photo courtesy of the Floral Park-Bellerose School District)

Fifth-graders in Dr. Jennifer Pecorella’s class at John Lewis Childs School took part in a “book tasting” to kick off their four-week literature circle.

During their first meeting, students were broken into groups and given a variety of books that aligned with their reading level. They also received a “menu” to write down some information about each book they received, a bookmark and a “reflection napkin” to share their thoughts on the book selection process.

During the next few weeks, the fifth-grade groups will assign themselves chapters to be read. They will also complete assignments such as vocabulary, summary and reader’s response and will be asked to create low-level and high-level questions. After each assignment the students will come together and discuss their response and questions.

In addition, the groups will practice English language arts skills and strategies with a quick “stop and jot” Post-it for each chapter. These Post-its will be posted in the room, and students will choose a skill they will practice each day. Finally, as a culminating activity, the students will create a book trailer based on their novel using iPads and share it with the class.

Dr. Pecorella said the activity is allowing students to spiral back on the skills they learned earlier in the year, including visualization, summarizing, cause and effect, and how to compare and contrast.

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