“I did my book review on Haiku: The Mood of the Earth by Ann Atwood,” said Bush Elementary School fourth grader Devon Walrod. “I picked it because I love to read poetry. I liked that the pictures in the book illustrated the poems. I love writing my own poetry about nature and mythical things. Writing the book review was really fun.”
Devon’s book review is just one of the many illustrated, student-written book reviews that cover the sign out desk at the Bush Advantage After School Program. Site Coordinator, Allison Slagle, saw her students carrying books, or reading during their free time. She got the idea to let her students become book critics.
“I would ask what they are reading and I would get very detailed plot lines,” said Mrs. Slagle. “I got the idea for students to be able to share the books they have read. It really support the new Common Core Standards, but the students also feel like they are sharing a secret with their peers. After I receive the book review, they are displayed for other students and parents to read. Several parents have flipped through the reviews and been very impressed. I’m just so happy that the students have taken this opportunity to read, write, and learn something new. Sometimes we have to push and persuade students to read for fun, but in this case, they did it all on their own.”
Students can choose from a large selection of books from the school library and Chautauqua Striders tutors have also helped the students with their reviews once their homework and tutoring is completed. Students answer questions such as: favorite part of the story, why you should read the book and who some of the characters are.
Student who have completed book reviews are: Kyleelynn Anderson, Ben Anderson, Emma Birt, Austyn Brumbaugh, Isabella DiDomenico, Chase DePonceau, Caitlin Freeline, Jeremy Gross, Payton Horton, Jillian Horton, Hayden Monge, Kayla Kryzanak, Morgan Overturf, Allison Tilberg, Devon Walrod, Joshua Williams and Jaden Yanik.