Many “before” and “after” photographs demonstrate loss. People want to document how much weight they have shed and show off their newer, slimmer self.
However, I’m proud to say that the before and after shots posted below are all about gain. In the first picture, students are holding up signs of how many books they read from during the first semester of school, prior to the introduction of independent reading as a program. The “after” photos depict what happened during the second semester where students were given 10 minutes to read during each class and were asked to read an independent book for a minimum of two hours each week. We bulked up on books, digested pages, shared stories and fell in love with literature all over again.
Take a look at our reading muscles:
Period 5 “Before”
Period 5 “After”
Period 7 “Before”
Period 7 “After”
Period 8 “Before”
Period 8 “After”
In January, I honestly didn’t know if this program would be successful. I had doubts as to whether or not the students would actually participate. Would they view this Reading (R)evolution as additional work? Would they pretend to read while hiding cell phones in between the pages? (For the record, only one student tried that.)
But the numbers speak for themselves. Students read more, they enjoyed reading, and I found that they were more willing to give the full-class texts a try. So thank you, Penny Kittle, and Book Love, for giving my students volumes of victory.