Sunday, January 12, 2014

2014 Mock Newbery at Emerson School, Part 1

We have had a terrific time this fall turning our 5th grade book club into a Mock Newbery group. Over the next ten days, I'll be sharing about the books we've been reading, students' comments, and then our final voting.

Our process:

2014 Newbery list, Emerson School
Each week, we talk about the books we've been reading, sharing the books' strengths and weaknesses. We began our list with 6 original titles and added others as kids raved about current reads. I've really enjoyed meeting weekly -- it's spread the love of reading and kept up enthusiasm for different titles.

Since we only have two copies of each title, we're each reading different books each week. I've asked each student to read five titles from our list. For some, it's been hard to fit these in with their Harry Potter addictions! We've kept track of our reading on the poster that hangs in the library.

We start with a check-in, sharing what we've been reading. I talk with my students about how important it is to recognize that some of us will *love* a book and we need to respect that. Then we move into weaknesses. Throughout, I encourage the kids to think of specific examples from the books that support their ideas.

We end with a reading plan for the week. I really like this way of helping kids think about a reading plan.

Our Newbery contenders:
There is no way that our small group could read all the books that the Newbery Committee will be discussing. I wanted a representative sample that fell within our 5th grader's range.

In fact, I think I've inspired new admiration from our group about just what the Newbery Committee must do -- from the amount of reading to the hard, hard decisions. Each student has tried to read at least five books from our list. We will only include books with at least five readers in our final vote. Here are the posts on our Mock Newbery:

I've been so excited to share this journey with Armin Arethna, a wonderful children's librarian from Berkeley Public Library, and a member of the 2015 Newbery Committee.

Many thanks to all the publishers for sharing review copies with us. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this site, a small portion goes to Great Kid Books (at no cost to you!). Thank you for your support.

©2014 Mary Ann Scheuer, Great Kid Books

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