Ideas for school book clubs

Written by shelley frost
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Ideas for school book clubs
Encourage reading with book clubs (Books image by JenJen from Fotolia.com)

School book clubs promote reading for kids of all ages. The clubs present reading in a more entertaining light rather than an assignment the kids are forced to do. School book clubs are flexible in terms of organisation, scheduling and types of activities. Let the kids take an active role in organising and planning the book club activities so they get more out of the groups.

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Group Rules and Identity

Successful school book clubs allow the kids to take charge of the group details, books and meetings. The kids are more likely to enjoy reading if they feel in control of the experience. Creating a set of group rules is still an important step for the book club. The rules should describe the expectations from the members, the number of meetings, how the members should treat one another and other rules for behaviour. Leave these rules up to the kids so they have ownership. They can also create a group name, slogan and other identifying characteristics to create a strong group feeling.

Lunch Meetings

Holding the book club meetings during lunch allows the kids to meet during school hours without taking away from instructional time. The book club schedules a day with the teacher to meet in the classroom. They enjoy lunch and share their thoughts on the book.

Learning Center Time

Another scheduling option is to allow the book clubs to meet during learning centre time. The book club finds a quiet corner of the room to meet and discuss the books they read. They can also use the time to do other related projects such as crafts or dramatic re-enactments of the story. While the book club isn't a structured educational activity, it does offer educational benefits so it is a worthwhile use of learning centre time.

Themed Clubs

Themed book clubs allow the kids to read books that meet their interests. They also allow the kids to meet with other students that have similar reading interests. The book club themes might revolve around a specific type of book such as historical fiction, mysteries or fantasy. They might also revolve around a particular topic such as animals or sports. The kids select books that relate to the overall theme for the book club.

Projects

Discussing the books read is the main component of book clubs. To expand upon the discussion, the school book club members can complete projects on the books. Like the book club rules, the projects should be student-led. Providing a list of potential projects gives the kids inspiration. Projects might include a poster, PowerPoint presentation, bookmark, skit or craft. The projects help the kids process the book and add to the entertainment value of the book club.

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