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Lesson

Selecting a "Just Right" Book (Developed by Ann Holton and Lynn Myers)

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Information Literacy Benchmarks

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Selects a "just right" book for personal reading

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Selects resources based on interest, need and appropriateness

Information Literacy Model Objectives

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Determines the best sources

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Identifies potential sources of information

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Assesses suitability of potential resources considering the time frame,  scope, and range of the topic

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Anticipatory Set

Ideas about books to read come from many sources: friends, teachers, library media specialists, and the library catalog.  All are good ways to get ideas for books.  No matter how you get suggestions for reading, the key is for each of you to learn to choose the right book for you.

Objectives

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The learner will select a reading book appropriate to his/her reading ability.

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Input

Preparation: Provide students with a copy of the "Just Right" book bookmark.  You may wish to consider having a poster printed with the steps in the process for posting in library and classrooms.

There are two categories of decisions to make when you are choosing a book:

1.  Does the book interest you?  You can tell by examining the external features of the book such as the cover, blurb, illustrations, and number of pages.

2.  Can you read the book?  You can tell this by reading a bit of the book, performing the five-finger test and asking a series of questions about the language and the story.

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Modeling

Preparation: The library media specialist should select several books that demonstrate the various features from the Identifying a "Just Right" book transparency, e.g., print features, interesting cover, good dialogue, and blurb.  Take students through entire process of deciding about a book by thinking out loud through the process while they observe.  Model the five-finger process.  use two or three books as time allows.  Reinforce the "Five-Finger" Rule each time.

Identifying a "Just Right" book. Students should understand that it is OK to turn down a suggestion of a book.  You might say, "I don't really like mysteries," or "I prefer books with lots of conversation," or "I like more illustrations."

Check for Understanding

Ask the following True or False Questions regarding the process (signal thumbs up/thumbs down).

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1.  The first thing I think about is, "Does the book seem fun?"

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2.  If I miss half the words on the first page it doesn't matter.  I still can check the book out.

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3.  Books that are comfortable are books my friend wants me to read.

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4.  In choosing a book, you should be interested enough to want to read the whole book.

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5.  Comfortable books are those I can read that are of interest to me, and ones I want to read the whole way through.

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6.  It's OK to turn down somebody's suggestion of a book for me to read.

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Guided Practice

During book checkout times, students choose books using this process and explain to teacher or library media specialist why the books were chosen (listen for and reinforce the process in their explanation and continue to emphasize the "Five Finger Rule").

Independent Practice

There will be continuing practice as students choose books in the future.

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Assessment

The library media specialist will observe students choosing books on several occasions and record observations based upon the Assessment Rubric for Selecting "Just Right" books.  This is an ongoing process, so a student may be a novice early in the year, but should proceed to proficient with ongoing guidance.

 

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This page was last updated on October 05, 2009.