Saturday, February 14, 2009

Literacy Lunches Take Two

This week I've been visiting a local elementary school to do a Literacy Lunch Bunch program for 2nd graders. We've done programs like these before for older kids and I was interested to see how the younger kids would take to it.

Every day this week a class of 2nd graders has met in the library during their lunchtime to hear Clementine by Sarah Pennypacker. One difference between this program and the last time I did the program is that I only read to the kids for 20 minutes a day. The older kids were able to sit and listen for a longer period of time, but the second graders needed part of their lunch break to run around outside and blow off some steam. (This was a decision made by the school librarian and I think it was a wise one!)

Partnership with a school librarian is one thing that has made these programs a success. In this case, the school librarian chose the class that would visit the library and she chose the book. (When I did this program at a different school last year, the kids signed up if they wanted to come and they voted on the book after hearing several booktalks from their school librarian.) In both cases, school librarians were instrumental in getting kids excited about the program. They endorsed it as a special treat and the kids saw it that way, too.

One exciting thing about reading the book Clementine this go-round is that Clementine is on the Monarch Book Award nominee list. So now there's an entire class that's listened to the book and might vote for it later this month. A few of them had read the book before, but I think they enjoyed hearing it again!

I had a lot of fun doing Literacy Lunches again and I loved getting the chance to read another novel out loud. It's not something I often get to do, so it's an enjoyable challenge.