Last week, we began our first book club in the Learning Commons. Students applied to be in the book club through a Google Form, and then teachers helped recommend students based on who could read a level 750 lexile book, and which kids seemed to be able to read an extra book in addition to what is expected of them in class.
Our first week, we focused on establishing norms and determining what types of information about the book we should look for and be prepared to share. The second week, we focused on the characters in the story. I printed some stock photos of people and matched those with characters in the book based on what descriptions we have of each (and guessed at some). From there, the kids added notes about each person on post-it notes and we will continue to add to this wall throughout the course of the book.
Our Wednesday focus was on one character – Nina – who is the key suspect in the murder mystery during the first few chapters of the book. We discussed her in great detail and many kids have strong opinions about why they are convinced she is or is not the murderer.
I am loving this book club! Starting with a murder mystery is fun and really engaging for the students in our group. I’ve not done anything quite like this before and I have several ideas of what I might change between this book and the next.