Outside Reading: Don’t Let These 2 Negatives Derail All the Positives

Earlier in the week we looked at the why and the how of assigning your students outside reading. For this post, I would like to directly address the top two reasons I avoided giving this assignment for as long as I did. And I will tell you why they are poor excuses.

Lately, I have been listening to the audiobook The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz, Ph.D. The message I keep hearing over and over is, “If you believe it can be done, you can find a way. But if you do not believe it can be done, then you will not look for a way.” This is the kind of thinking that led me to shake those excuses and move toward creating a meaningful assignment for my students.

Years ago, I decided to stop letting the reasons “not to” block my students from the possibility of becoming lifelong readers. Instead, I tried to work around the problems I was anticipating. And I showed you how I do it, but now I want to help you think around the two negative arguments that kept some of my past students sidelined from developing a habit of reading.  Continue reading “Outside Reading: Don’t Let These 2 Negatives Derail All the Positives”

5 Ways to Nudge Students to Engage with Outside Reading

Monday’s post gave 4 factors to persuade teachers to start giving outside reading assignments. I am sure, however, that there are still concerns about the average student’s motivation to complete this assignment and avoid the temptation to cut corners by cheating. I share in those concerns.

Over the years, though, I have come up with ways to steer students to complete their outside reading assignment with fidelity. I still have to watch for apathy and student who insist on cutting corners, but I spend far less energy on that element of the assignment than I used to.

Here are 5 ways to nudge students to engage with their outside reading.  Continue reading “5 Ways to Nudge Students to Engage with Outside Reading”