Thursday, July 10, 2008

i guess i have to play the game

this week we had our first two Summer Reading Club meetings. the first meeting was for kindergarten through 3rd grade. i read them some picture books and we talked about what books they've been reading. then we made a cute butterfly stick puppet with a butterfly on one side and a caterpillar on the other. it was pretty sweet.

then yesterday we had the meeting for the 3rd through 6th graders (i know, i am letting the 3rd graders attend TWO meetings). now, for a long time i have wanted to read the older kids a real book. you know, something that is actually on their grade level. i remember being in school and having books read to me like The Secret Garden or Charlie and the Chocolate Factory or The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe. and at that time, dear blog readers i was not much of a reader myself. i loved being read to but i didn't like reading myself. so i have longed to read a book like that to my kids, but i have feared that they wouldn't pay attention or would misbehave and it would end in disaster and i would feel sad.

but yesterday ... oh yesterday! i started reading them The Sisters Grimm, which is one of my favorite new children's books (omg, i just found out book six has already been released! yay!). anyway, they seemed to enjoy it. i only read half of the first chapter because i figured less is more. but at the end i asked them a question regarding the plot and it was obvious from their answers that they were indeed acutally paying attention! yay! i am so excited! then afterwards we made fortune tellers (you know how i love to make fortune tellers) but instead of fortunes we put questions about books (fyi to librarians: i got the book review/fortune teller template from the nys summer reading manual). so when they were done they all paired up and asked each other questions about a book they had read (or about Sisters Grimm if they hadn't read a book themselves). they totally dug it and the group of 12 or so kids were interviewing each other about books. i am amazing. seriously amazing.

on a sadder note, although i have about 100 kids signed up for the summer reading club, i was told that They will not be happy with our numbers because not many of our kids are reporting the books they read. you see, they are supposed to sign in online and report all the books they read. now, a few of our go-getter kids are doing this. they are even writing book reviews. but most of them are not. and many of them are reading little books here and there and could be logging them in, but most of them choose not to. why? because it isn't very fun. when they go on the computer they want to play games or sneak onto myspace or print up pictures of soulja boy. some of them are writing down the books they read in these little summer reading logs that we get, but i was told that this doesn't count. it must be reported officially. why print thousands of summer reading logs for the kids if you just want them to log them into the computer? beats me.

at first i was annoyed by this whole thing, viewing it as The Man sucking the fun out of summer reading. but i have now realized that since i've decided to stay and have passed my probation, i probably need to "play the game" a little. (but not too much because you know my rebellious spirit cannot be vanquished) i will try to encourage more kids report books online. i'm not sure how to accomplish this. but i think bribery will be in order.


*Bitch Cakes* said...

I think our next punk rope outing needs to include a craft time where we make fortune tellers or something with googly eyes. Joe Katz needs to organize this...

Her Mother said...

Bribery is a beautiful thing. a win/win situation -- kids get stuff; you get credit. May I sponsor an "incentive?"

Miss Dewey Decimal said...

there will be a day when i call on you for an incentive. just you wait.

p.s. nice profile pic, birthday girl!