The question I grappled with was how to move students from “couch-potato” readers who can answer basic questions with one word–to readers who think while reading–to readers who think beyond their reading.
In Notebook Know-How, Aimee Buckner demonstrated the power of notebooks to spark and capture students’ ideas in the writing workshop. In Notebook Connections, she turns her focus to the reading workshop, showing how to transform those “couch-potato” readers into deep thinkers.
Buckner’s fourth-grade students use reader’s notebooks as a place to document their thinking and growth, to support their thinking for group discussions, and to explore their own ideas about a text without every entry being judged as evidence of their reading progress. Buckner describes her model as flexible enough for students to respond in a variety of ways yet structured enough to provide explicit instruction.
Notebook Connections leads teachers through the process of launching, developing, and fine-tuning a reader’s notebook program. Teacher-guided lessons in every chapter help students create anchor texts for their notebooks using various comprehension and writing strategies. As students become more proficient, they grow more independent in their thinking and responses and will begin to select the strategies that work best for them. In the process, the notebook becomes a bridge that helps students make connections between ideas, texts, strategies, and their work as readers and writers.
Notebook Connections, filled with lesson ideas and assessment tips, provides a comprehensive model for making reader’s notebooks the centerpiece of your reading workshop.