Celebrate Summer Reading!


This morning I celebrate the beginning of summer.

Though school ended a week ago, it’s taken a week to close up the space that will be my home next school year.

Teachers collect things. When we move we take stock of what we have and make decisions as to what we need. Treasures and tools that were essential might not be anymore. In my world book are important tools. To meet the needs of students, I’ve collected thousands of books. Boxes and boxes. But here’s the problem, over time books age and become less relevant.

As much as it pains me to discard these treasures, no nine-year-old will pick up a book with an aged or torn cover. No matter how good the story is, yellowed or water damaged pages will not beckon a reader. Donalyn Millers’ advice was in the forefront of my thoughts as I sorted books this week. Bolstering each decision. To keep or toss.

Books with stains, torn pages, split bindings, or funny smells turn off readers. If a book is yellow with age or depends on tape to remain in one piece, throw it away, The physical condition of the library says a lot about its currency and how much we value readers. — Reading in the Wild

There are other lenses I’ll need to consider when summer ends.
Some around science and social studies. Others around fourth grader needs and sensibilities.  But this week, I celebrate the removal of “ugly” books and the beginnings of a new home for my classroom library.

Yesterday, I closed the door on a stripped-down, boxed-up room.

Today, I open the door to summer reading.

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4th Grade TCRWP Reading and Writing Units of Study
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My growing TBR pile
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Fabulous books from Booksource to introduce Nex Gen Science Standards

Read more celebrations, here on Ruth Ayers Writes.

10 thoughts on “Celebrate Summer Reading!

  1. Yes, we do collect things. I need to do some library weeding myself. My classroom is already cleaned for the summer, so I will get to linger while pulling out those weeds! I have yet to buy Dynamic Teaching, but it is calling me…quite loudly! Happy beginning of summer to you!

  2. Your photos tell the story of summer beginning. It will be fun for me to follow you as a 4th grade teacher. Next year my job is also shifting, and I will teach only 4th grade reading and language arts. Beyond that I will be in lots of classrooms, across all curricular areas, supporting teachers and instruction.
    I do hope you have some relaxing summer plans… down time, writing time, family time, play time.

  3. Already ‘renewing’ your classroom will help you start so happily next year, Julieanne. There was a time when I was cleaning at the end of the year that I relished, thinking about the year past, the future, where I wanted change. Sometimes just cleaning out one shelf was exhilarating. I love hearing your plan of ending, ready for the next beginning.

  4. There is something so refreshing about starting over and cleaning out. I’m glad you’ve finished the clean out and can focus on enjoying your summer.

  5. Loved reading about your weeding. I’m still working through the last few boxes of my stuff from retirement (3 years ago)! And I need to weed bookshelves at home. You’ve inspired me. I love seeing your summer reading stack. I hope you’ll have time to squeeze in some novels too!

  6. Welcome to the summer of a new focus in your reading. These fourth graders are unaware of the joy you will bring to them next year. Happy reading and I hope we get to meet up again.

  7. Julieanne, it is exciting to start again and with a delicious group of 4th graders. I love that age group. Weeding out the old to make way for the new is a great way to feel renewed in spirit. Enjoy your summer.

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