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How do we "grow" readers if they have not budded as readers, yet?

Hey everybody,
I'm Reading Queen Bee (Cheryl Hill),
www.empoweringchildrentoread.blogspot.com.

I am having such a great a time reading about all of you! I am learning so much!
I have been a librarian for six years now, and, it took someone else to see the librarian in me to point me in the direction to become a librarian. I have always loved teaching children to read. I have always loved reading books and reading books to children. I have always loved using literature as a jumping off point to inspire children to read and write.

In becoming a librarian, I was told that librarians “grow” readers.
Well what does a librarian do when many children who enter the library door(s) do not possess the prerequisite skills to actually read the wonderful books in the library? How can a librarian inspire children to read and get excited about what they cannot do in the first place, which is to read? Armed with the knowledge and skills/tools from my previous life as a classroom teacher, I started thinking about it a lot, hence, the creation of www.empoweringchildrentoread.blogspot.com.
Although, I have incorporated various beginning reading games in addition to library skills’ games, I’m still mulling over various strategies to incorporate to be most effective, and, don’t yet have it worked out thoroughly as to how I will create a framework to impact the beginning reading skills of the struggling readers entering my library.

We engage children in the accelerated reading program and they love it! Also, I do have children (in grades 3-5) who are wonderful readers and they belong to my Bluebonnet and Beyond Reading Club; these children read 35-50 books (most of them chapter books) a year, in readiness for our district’s Name That Book Contest; yet, I still worry about the children who aren’t inspired and can’t get excited about books in order for the librarian to “grow” their reading because, either, they can’t read or they have gaps in their reading skills that cripple them from wanting to read and enjoy books.
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My blog gives voice for my written expressions and opinions; I also share much of what I say on my blog in newsletter format with the teachers at my school.

p.s. My school has about 1,200 students--- Prekindergarten -5th grade.
Each day, I have 7 ancillaries classes (45 minutes each) and no library clerk.Delete Comment

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Comment by Karen Hornberger on April 30, 2007 at 8:50pm
I think we need to consider that there are different reading styles. While some students love fiction, others prefer nonfiction. The strategies required to tackle nonfiction are far different than the ones needed for fiction. Our whole faculty read a book one summer called Reading for Academic Success that provides useful tools for tackling nonfiction. I would suggest this book to any teacher and librarian - It is by Silver and Strong. ICheryl, I see that you are at the elementary level - I think there is an elementary version of this book that I loved so much! Good luck and congrats on your successes so far!!!!

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