Lesson: Selecting books based on interest

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Lesson Objective

Students will use a variety of strategies to select a book to read during independent reading time.

Lesson Plan

Connection (3-5 mins): Readers today is a big day.  Today is the day that we will begin selecting books from our classroom library.  I know many of you noticed the library has been closed for the first week of school.  After today’s lesson you will be able to shop from the library during your book shopping days.


Teach (10-12 mins): Students should be seated on the carpet with a partner.  Students have not learned procedures for turning and talking at this point in the year but they may be asked to share an idea with a partner throughout the lesson.


Readers, I am going to share with you about a book I selected from the public library yesterday.  I always spend a long time in the library looking at different books to figure out what book I am really interested in reading.  Yesterday I selected the book, “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” by Stieg Larsson.  When I first saw this book on the shelf, I was interested in the title so I began to flip through the pages.  I noticed there was a summary on the back cover of the book.  This is a great place to look for information about the book.  As I read the summary, I thought about if I would be reading more of the book.  The summary told me that the book was about a girl who helps solve a mystery.  I love mysteries and after reading just the small paragraph on the back of the book I decided I had to find out how the mystery was solved. 


Did you notice how I didn’t just pick a book and walk away with it.  I first read the summary and flipped through the pages to see if I was interested in the topic.  I will add these two ideas to the chart, “ways to select books”.  Think for a minute about other ways we could select a book.  Once you have an idea, whisper the idea to your partner.  In two minutes I want to see a lot of hands in the air to share out ideas. 


Teachers call on students to share out ideas.  Teacher should guide student conversations and expect students to share out the following responses: genre, a book in a series, favorite author, topic of interest, or reading a few pages.


We now have a big list of ways we can select a book.  We don’t always have to use all these ideas but it is a good idea to use more than one way to select a book.  This will help us make sure as readers we are interested in what we choose to read and that we don’t always abandon books because we lose interest.


Today when you return to your seats, you will be able to practice picking a book from a variety of books.  As you pick a book remember to use all of our ideas for ways to select books.


Active Engagement (15-20 mins): Students should return to their table groups.  Each group is given a bin of books from the library with multiple genres and reading levels.  Students should take time to read through the books using strategies taught during class.  When they select the book of their choice, they should fill out the thinking about book selection form.  If students finish early they may read their book selections independently.


Exit Slip/Share (3-5 mins): Students should select their final book and complete the book selection exit slip.  This slip requires students to explain what strategies they used to pick a book and why they chose the book.  Teacher can use this exit slip to guide conversations with students about their book selections.


Reflection: This is a great way to get students interested in the books in your classroom library.  Students may only select one book from their assigned group bins but this exposes them to many different genres and books.  The goal is that students continue to use these strategies throughout the course of the year but also that they find other books during this search they may want to read later.

Lesson Resources

Book Selection Form.doc  


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