Drop Everything and Read for BC School Library Day

Today is BC School Library Day. Help celebrate the day, and more importantly the power and joy of reading, by rising up to the “Drop Everything and Read” Challenge.

Students, teachers and all staff at Lord Tweedsmuir are challenged to take at least 20 minutes during Block A this morning for recreational reading. That means put away the textbooks, take a break from the lessons, set aside the homework, end the conversations, put your phone in your backpack, and sit back for some silent, uninterrupted reading.

Read for fun, read to escape, read to be scared, or to laugh, or to learn something you want to learn about. Read something you choose because you will enjoy it. Read for reading’s sake.

If parents or somebody asks you why you were reading for fun instead of doing school work, you can tell them, you were doing both. Students who read more for fun do better in school.

Why should schools care about recreational reading?

Should teachers set aside time during the school day for kids to read for pleasure?

Yes.

Should schools do more to encourage kids to become recreational readers?

Yes.

Will there be enough of a payoff for our education system even if it means less time spent on other things?

Yes.

The answer to all these questions is most certainly yes.

Reading for pleasure, recreational reading, free voluntary reading, personal reading– whatever¬† you want to call it–¬† is built upon the intrinsic goal of reading because it directly benefits the reader: Reading for the sake of reading.¬† Yet there are myriad indirect benefits that come from recreational reading, many of which lead to profoundly positive educational outcomes.

Source: Freepik

A teacher should care that a student reads for pleasure, because reading brings pleasure to the student!  However, more than that, a teacher can also point to so many other benefits that come from recreational reading that will pay off in terms of academic achievement, social learning and character education.

If teachers (or parents, or administrators) are worried that the kids are missing out on valuable educational lessons, please remember this: Students who read more for pleasure will do better in school.¬† Recreational reading has many, many indirect educational benefits to students. Students who do more recreational reading will see improvements in vocabulary, writing skills, grammar, spelling, comprehension, critical thinking, concentration and so many other skills that are essential to one’s overall education.

Moreover, students who read more for pleasure will grow in social and emotional learning, as students can share in the experiences of different people, growing in empathy and understanding for people all backgrounds, ages, genders, orientations, beliefs and cultures.

As if those weren’t enough reasons for reading, here are some more. Reading books can help mitigate against the harmful effects of too much time spent on phones and in front of other screens. One simple and yet important example of this is that studies show that people who read from books or magazines before bed will sleep better than those who are looking at screens before trying to fall asleep.

There are so many reasons to read.

Schools need to do more to encourage kids to read for reading’s sake.¬† In doing so, the school will reap the rewards of having kids who do better in school.


October is International School Library Month
and Canadian Library Month.

Horror

Halloween is coming up soon.  This is a great time to check out our display of Halloween related books, including both fiction and non-fiction.

The DEAR Challenge is Coming Soon

Once again the BC Teacher Librarians’ Association, in conjunction with the BCTF, has issued its annual DEAR Challenge: Drop Everything and Read, on BC School Library Day, Monday, October 26th.¬†

All students and staff in are challenged to read for 20 minutes in Block A on October 26th. Put aside the textbooks, put away the phone, turn off the computer,¬† and don’t worry about the homework or the marking.¬† Just sit back and enjoy 20 minutes of silent, uninterrupted reading.

Read something that you have picked because you want to read it, for whatever reason.  Maybe you want to laugh, or cry, or be scared, or thrilled, or simply want to escape from this world for a while. Or maybe you want to learn something, explore a topic you are interested in, or discover something new.

Whatever it is that you pick, enjoy the time to read. And as a bonus, you can know that students who spend more time reading for fun, do better in school.¬† Recreational reading is one of the best ways to improve academic performance and is one of the best predictors of academic success. You read for enjoyment and for school success– it’s win-win.


The DEAR Challenge and BC School Library Day are a part of Canadian Library Month and International School Library Month.

 

Thanks on Thanksgiving

What are you thankful for in your life?¬† You can take time on any day of the year to consider how much you have for which to be thankful.¬† However, Thanksgiving is the day especially set aside for it. Enjoy the day off, and if you are fortunate enough, enjoy some family time and a big meal together.¬† In addition to that, if you can, be sure take some time on Thanksgiving, and even the days leading up to it, to consider all the things in your life that are worthy of gratitude.¬† Everyone’s situation is different.¬† And honestly, this has been a tough year for people, really tough for some. However, you might find that life looks a bit better when you can take some time to stop and consider that for which you can give thanks.

One card, one million possibilities

source: librarianship.ca

Do you have a Library Card? If not, get one! Do you use your Library Card? If not, why not? Take advantage of all that libraries have to offer. Visit your local Public Library, and the many great libraries of your city, including Surrey Libraries, VPL and FVRL.  And as always, take advantage of everything that your School Library has to offer.  October is Canadian Library Month. The best way to celebrate is to use the library!