Welcome to Mentor Monday!

library books outside

Thinking ahead – choosing good books for your student!

What is a good book?

A recent Reading is Fundamental guide states “a book doesn’t have to win an award to be considered ‘good.’ It doesn’t have to be a best seller or on a recommended book list, either. A good book is simply one a child enjoys reading.” Ask your student about topics. What is your student interested in reading? Ask them! Students can tell you what they like and don’t like, what they want to learn, and maybe what they want to do when they grow up.

Think of these topics for subjects to read and help guide them to good books.

Understand that a student’s reading interest will change throughout the year. So for young readers, here are a few tips:

  • Choose books with clear text that is easy to read.
  • Select books with colorful, attractive illustrations and photos that bring the text to life.
  • Choose books that appeal to your student’s current interest.
  • Find other books with your student’s favorite characters, or books by their favorite authors and illustrators.
  • Select books that introduce higher level vocabulary and encourage good discussion.
  • Consider books that your student remembers hearing when they were younger. Those books might be the perfect selection for a student to begin reading on their own.
  • Be open to reading fact books, such as almanacs, trivia or record books.
  • Think outside the box and introduce biographies, classics, graphic novels, cookbooks, newspapers and folk tales.
  • Finally, find chapter books that can be read over several days instead of in one sitting.

Consider a “dramatic reading” of the “classic” story – Grumpy Monkey

Remember to practice reading the book out loud prior to your session with the student. Reading out loud should not be monotone, so give it all you’ve got! Dramatic and fun sound effects, hand motions, facial expressions, and changes in tone invite the student to become a part of the story with you.
It is perfectly acceptable to briefly look through a book and then decide if it is a story-line you both want to pursue. If after reading a few pages or a chapter and you don’t like the story, pick another book. Reading with your student should not be a chore, it should be fun!

Another way – celebrate books as an art form:

animals that should not exist

Our music selections embrace the quarantine or are uplifting or can be soothing. Enjoy!

As always, thank you for volunteering!
Stay safe and be well,