So since I posted my thoughts on What is Reading? I’ve been thinking I should tell more about who I am as a reader. It definitely impacts how I teach, I tend to look to books often no matter the subject I’m teaching. I remember back during my last field experience before student teaching using the book The Doorbell Rang by Pat Hutchins to introduce division. Even in teaching technology I often use books and there are some great ones out there, but that’s a topic for another day I think, back to the topic at hand. I came up with some questions that I have asked students in the past as I try to help them find books and answered them. Here are a few.
What is the first book you remember reading? or What is your best reading memory?
I know that I started reading young, I’m one of the lucky kids that picked up reading really quickly. The first book I can remember reading is On the Banks of Plum Creek by Laura Ingalls Wilder. The teacher assigned each kid in our reading group a different Little House book to read and then share with the group, thus began my fascination with Little House and Mrs. Wilder. I also distinctly remember reading my first Danielle Steel novel, I was in sixth grade, yeah probably a bit young for it but my aunt gave it to me and my mom approved so… Palomino was and still is a great read.
Where do you get books?
I get books mostly from the library. I love the fact that I can put them on hold, though I have many times reached the maximum limit for holds on my account, often with new books. As soon as I see the new title in a series I’ve been reading I head to the library site to put it on hold. I do occasionally buy books. For myself I buy used books, I save the money to buy new books for my son, though he gets used ones too. Our favorite place to buy used books is V-Stock, not just books they have CDs, DVDs, video games, toys, comics, and more. We also spend a lot of money yearly with Scholastic through book orders, the book fairs, and the warehouse sales. If you’ve never been to a Scholastic warehouse sale and have one near you, GO you won’t regret it. I do get e-books sometimes though I guess I should say iBooks as the only e-reader I have is my iPod. I have purchased four, other than that every book I have on my Pod comes from the “top free” chart, but I have found some really great books there, one that led me to a whole series in paperback at my local library. I wrote a post for What Will She Read Next on back in February on the Kowalski Clan.
What draws you to a book? Why do you pick the books you pick?
Often I’m drawn to books by an author I’ve read before. It may be a topic I’m interested in, I recently saw the book The President’s Club at the library and while I didn’t check it out as I had a large stack already to read it went on my to read list because the White House, it’s residents, and employees have recently become a topic I’m very interested in. My mom suggests books, my friends suggest books, before e-readers became so popular my mom, aunt, grandmother and I would pass books around with each of us writing our name on the inside cover so we knew who had read it. I watch to see what books are suggested at the library as well and now my son also checks that display. When it comes to looking for children’s, juvenile, or young adult fiction I also check the yearly award nominee lists. Here in Missouri the Missouri Association of School Librarians or MASL each year nominates books for various awards based on age group: Show-Me Readers for grades 1-3, Mark Twain for grades 4-6, Truman for grades 6-8, and Gateway for high schoolers. I have come across some great books on those lists and some not so great books but it’s always worth checking out.
So what are your answers to these questions? I’d especially love to know how others pick books and where you get your books.