Last week we thought about the real-world implications of the Common Core shift toward making grade level complex text accessible to all readers, and we explored using text sets in a variety of classroom structures to make this balance happen for children.
Today we offer you five books you can use to support conversations about forming reading habits in your classroom. We present these titles in order from easiest to hardest (in terms of print difficulty) and leave you to decide which structure will best suit your students.
1. Look I Can Read (Amazon Affiliate Link) by Susan Hood
This book is geared toward primary readers who are just beginning to explore the excitement of recognizing letters and reading words on their own.
2. Hooray for Amanda and Her Alligator (Amazon Affiliate Link) by Mo Willems
You will see Amanda reading throughout this book, but take extra time to focus on the selection entitled “A Surprising Solution,” as it helps children to think about the transformative power of reading.
3. The Incredible Book Eating Boy (Amazon Affiliate Link) by Oliver Jeffers
Henry loves books but he “devours” so many of them that he just isn’t able to “digest” them. This is a great book for thinking about reading for meaning and about CCSS standard number four, which requires that students “interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text…including connotative, and figurative meanings.”
4. Wolf (Amazon Affiliate Link) by Becky Bloom
Because he can’t read, Cow, Pig, and Duck don’t see Wolf as the big, bad creature he thinks he is. This book focuses on the transformative power of reading and is layered with multiple meanings, giving readers much to think about as they develop ideas about readership.
Thank You, Mr. Falker (Amazon Affiliate Link) by Patricia Polacco
This autobiographical tale of Patricia Polacco’s own struggle with learning to read is infused with important messages about persistence and once again, the transformative power of reading. Also, Junkyard Wonders, is the incredible sequel to Thank You, Mr. Falker. It is equally poignant and inspiring.
For ten more titles and reviews of books about reading habits, see Literacyhead’s set of “Ten Titles.”