Falling in Love with Reading in 1st Grade!!

This semester students in READ 6310 were asked to contribute a post to our blog.

By Elma A.

Can 1st grade students really fall in love with Reading? Yes, they can!!! Reading is crucial in every subject and when skills are developed at the beginning they can begin an endless journey of true enjoyment. Is falling in love with reading never wanting to put a book down? Yes, I believe this year has been exceptionally good with my 1st graders as they started and discovered the true authentic meaning of READING.  Although many are not be at a fluent reading level, the approach I have taken is different and all students have been receptive about partner reading, choral reading, and discussing their personal opinions of type’s of literature and genres. I have modeled through read aloud which have been very successful, share readings, class discussions, partner reading and have noticed how students are engaged in activities as they gain appreciation for literature and captivate their attention as well. 

During my Reading class 6310 Children’s and Adolescent literature this Spring semester 2013, I’ve had the exposure of many multi cultural literature books which I have integrated and enjoyed seeing my children relate to stories in their own personal lives.

Some examples of these books are Dear Primo: A letter to my Cousin by Duncan Tonatiuh, a book which consists of two cousins writing to each other from two different parts of the world. In this bilingual book language is introduced along with different cultures from Mexico and America. Another example is La Buena Noche by Antonio Sacre which is about a young girl visiting her grandmother in Miami for Christmas. Students in class could relate how they also visit their grandparents in Mexico for the holidays.  They shared with their partners about a special time they spent time away with either a cousins or a grandparent. One literature book one of my students could truly relate to is Playing Loteria/El juego de la Loteria, by Rene Colato Lainez. My students enjoyed this literature book as I used it in my read aloud and they were remembering how they played loteria with family during family gathering or a special holiday. Story was about how child didn’t understand the Spanish language but throughout the story both child and abuelita were able to understand each other as they played loteria and bonded.

After sharing these literature books and many more, I have been able to capture students desire to want to read more and more. Literature books are colorful, entertaining, and captivated their imagination and many would wonder what life was really like out there as they intertwine with characters.  Read aloud have a purpose and has opened up a new way of viewing literature and family ties.

In my literature class reading The Wonder of it All: When Literature and Literacy Intersect, by Nancy J. Johnson and Cyndi Giorgis it gave great suggestions of understanding when literature and literacy intersect. I have integrated many of these ideas such as literature circles and students engage in activities as they share opinions about literature to each other most of all the multi cultural books. This literature books have created effective and affective readers ever since I began using it in my classroom.

So definitely when a curiosity, wonder, determination, desire is inspired in students, students will start READING! This is the beginning to a wonderful journey learning to read and wanting to read at all times!!


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