Okay, the semester is almost over. In my seven-student class (two girls and five boys, all sophomores and juniors) here’s what they chose to read for independent reading time.
My class is an ELL (English Language Learners) class comprised of students with roots in Micronesia, the Philippines, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, and a few villages in rural Alaska. Some have been in this country their entire lives and some have just arrived a few months ago.
We had 15 to 20 minutes of in-class reading time two or three times a week, and students had the option of taking their books home to read as well. The girls often took their books home; the boys did not.
I did not require them to do any writing assignments in relation to their independent reading, or read a certain number of pages. I allowed them to stop reading a book if they wanted to just like us adults do. It was a no-strings-attached approach. For more details about my ideas regarding fostering reading in the classroom see this post.
I had a wide selection of young adult fiction and other books for my students to choose from. They were also allowed to bring books from home or the library.
In no particular order, these are books my students enjoyed and finished, or are about to finish.
Jumping Off Swings by Jo Knowles
Deadline by Chris Crutcher
Last Chance Texaco by Brent Hartinger
Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
Cut by Patricia McCormick
Trapped by Michael Northrop
Pinned by Alfred Martino
Wrestling Sturbridge by Rich Wallace
Across the Universe by Beth Revis
The First Part Last by Angela Johnson
Raiders Night by Robert Lipstyte
Right Behind You by Gail Giles
Sweethearts by Sara Zarr
Popular by Alissa Grosso
Cheating Death: Amazing Survival stories from Alaska by Larry Kaniut
Someone to Love Me by Anne E. Schraff and Paul Langan
As you can see from the list above, my students tended to gravitate toward contemporary, realistic stories.