Monday, December 14, 2015

Literature Reference Bookmarks

Hey there,everyone!

This week my kiddos finished reading The Giver by Lois Lowry. I've been waiting for this for two reasons. 1) It means Winter Break is so close I can almost taste it! 2) I can now post about their reference bookmarks because I have examples to show and more insight!

This year, I decided to start using reference bookmarks as a way of helping my lower level readers on the same page (pun intended, of course) as the rest of the class with important aspects of the novel. I also use them because it holds my students accountable for what they read and retain during a novel study.

The lit. reference bookmarks I use are ones I made to fit the specific needs of my classroom and students, but they are pretty basic. They come in two different formats. The first is the activity template and is the format I use most often. This format has space for my students to write down specific information from the novel as they read.

For my lower level readers or for higher level novels, I like to use my pre-filled bookmarks. This format lists all of the same specific information topics, but comes with all of that information already filled out for the student.

Topics included on both formats include:
-Author name
-Original publishing date
-Context (historical or within the author's life)
-Main characters (name and brief description)
-Favorite quote/Memorable quote

For my classroom, this is the basic information I would like all of my students to know at all times. For your classroom, you might like to include things like point of view, conflict, connections, or even the points on a plot map! Depending on what you want your students to get out of a novel and what you want them looking for as they read, you'll want to add topics and replace some altogether.

In my classroom, I collect and grade bookmarks (the fill-in template format) at then end of a novel study. I love seeing that many of my students bookmarks get turned in worn and written on in different colors. This proves to me that they were recording the different pieces of information as they identified it in their reading. If I've handed out the pre-filled version, I like to discuss the different aspects as they appear throughout our reading. In the honors setting, I have my students add to the pre-filled version or have give them a pre-filled bookmark with basic information and a blank template bookmark with other information listed.

Truthfully, the possibilities are endless! I'm so glad I decided to give these a try this year! I plan on using this new tool with every new novel I introduce. Have any of you used these or something similar in your own classroom? I'd love to know what information points you include on yours!

If you'd like to purchase my bookmarks, you can find them here!

-Taliena (Koch's Odds 'N Ends)