Whether you have voracious or reluctant readers in your classroom or at home, there is a good book out there for everyone. Today, I will explore topics such as how to foster a love of reading, the benefits of reading in 2023, and some awesome book suggestions for teachers and parents alike. Use the resources linked below to consider building your classroom (or home) library into a reading wonderland to explore.
Doctor’s orders- Get reading in 2023!
Dr. Seuss said, “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” I have always loved that quote from Seuss’s Oh, The Places You’ll Go, the last book he wrote prior to his death in 1991. When I worked in a high school in 2016, that quote was often used to commemorate major student milestones. It showed up in yearbooks, commencement themes, and even on students’ graduation announcements.
Humor is Timeless
It should be of no surprise that we are still reading Dr. Seuss in 2023. As children, his stories tied our tongues and gripped our hearts. Nearly anyone can recall their favorite Dr. Seuss story or rhyme (Green Eggs and Ham for me!). If you have children or students who are fans of Dr. Seuss but are looking for a more advanced text, try a different author with similar humor and style, such as Shel Silverstein, author and poet!
When I was in fourth grade, my teacher played a recording of Shel Silverstein reading poems from Where the Sidewalk Ends. I distinctly remember laughing so hard I couldn’t breathe when he recited, “The Farmer and the Queen”. It was easily the funniest poem I had ever heard. If you are planning to do any reading in 2023 for yourself, or with your kids or students, I urge you to find Shel Silverstein at your local library and have some fun with poetry!
Reading in 2023
Everyday we read. We may not be reading great classic works with sheer devotion, but we are consuming information daily. This year, one of my personal goals was to approach 2023 in a more literary way.
You may wonder how I, a librarian and lover of literature, need to read more. The truth is, I do not often have time to read for pleasure. This is a great regret of mine. Between what I am required to read for professional development at work and what I read at home to my children, it leaves very little time for me to choose something for myself. This may describe many of us, especially those of us who are in the classroom every day. I challenge you to find something that you have time to read in 2023. Once a month, carve out a pocket of time to read a short story, an interesting article, or read a chapter at a time of a novel!
Top 5 Benefits of Reading
Reading has a tried and true positive effect on brain development. Reading enhances vocabulary and writing skills, and keeps us sharp as we age. According to this study from the American Academy of Neurology, regular reading was proven to slow the pace of cognitive decline in patients suffering from dementia.
- Flex your memory muscles– Reading stimulates mental activity. Similar to the act of completing a crossword puzzle or a word game, reading results in cognitive stimulation. Your memory and concentration are refined through reading.
- Reduce stress-Think about a time when you read a book or story you truly loved and how relaxed you felt after you finished reading it. In some cases, you might find that your stress is reduced when you read an article or quote that provides much needed guidance or advice.
- Become a better writer– There is no question that reading enhances one’s vocabulary. Reading exposes us to a variety of words we may not otherwise come across. Observing proper grammar in a text allows readers to become better writers. Practice what you know!
- Problem solve– When we read regularly, we encourage our brains to be analytical. Thinking about plot elements forces our brains to think critically and analyze information. This may be why you are great at figuring out ‘who dunnit?’ in mystery novels!
- Feed your brain– Picking up a book starts a chain reaction. Reading can teach us something new or expand upon a topic we already know a lot about. Simply put, reading makes us smarter.
Classroom reading in 2023
Certainly, there are some amazing ways to enjoy reading in 2023 and nurture its myriad of benefits. Most people begin a love of reading in the early years of childhood, usually due to a parent or teacher reading aloud to them. Studies have shown that reading for fun has a direct impact on increasing student success in academics. Educators from two Texas universities published this article titled, “The Impact of Pleasure Reading on Academic Success” in The Journal of Multidisciplinary Graduate Research. The educators interviewed for the study were in agreement that students benefit greatly from reading for pleasure. connections between reading and high academic performance. The challenge for students and educators alike is that state requirements for testing and curriculum are obstacles to making time to read. While teachers can’t disregard state requirements for testing or ignore the curriculum, there is still space to bring in your own literacy supports to your classroom.
MTTES has an amazing Reading Small Group Bundle for you to use in your classroom or at home.
The 90- page bundle includes the following:
– Small Group Plans
– Rotation Charts & Cards
– Fluency Activities
– Guided Reading Lesson Plan
– Comprehension Bookmarks, and more!
To utilize the Reading Small Group Bundle, start by establishing a class or group plan for each week. Consider the objective, strategies, and activities for each week and map them out using the lesson plan provided. Throw in fun activities like making bookmarks (templates included) and practice reading fluency. Time to enjoy some great reading in 2023 and beyond!
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Courtney is an MTT tutor, academic coach, and blog contributor for MTTES. If you check out our FB and Instagram pages, you might see her giving a storytime with her son Jack through the company’s Facebook Live service. Courtney’s love of the English language, learning, and creative writing inspired her to contribute relevant content to teachers, tutors, parents, and homeschoolers seeking support across an array of trending topics. She and her teacher husband have two small children and reside in Baltimore, MD with their dog Lottie May.