Atwell explains the “reading zone” as the place where a reader finds themselves once they fully get engaged into a “good book” of their choice. I was exited to realize that I had been there. I’m sure all of us have, at one time or another, but I was glad that I felt like I had a connection with the author. It’s like getting lost in the book or falling into the pages and not wanting to be pulled out.
I also liked what she calls the “Reader’s Bill of Rights”, where reading is allowed to be relaxing instead of rigid and unconventional.
I liked the idea of having a classroom library so kids can have a choice in what they read. THis idea will encourage them to want to read and I think if I were a teacher, I would make all Thursday classes “Reading Day.” Bring a book to class and you will get a 100% and if you don’t have one, then you can take one from my shelf.
I think that the process of metacognition can destroy the joy of reading because it makes the process rigid.
I was startled by the statistic that a third of middle school students and half of the 15 to 17 year olds only read about 2 or 3 times a month because they can’t find books that they want to read. I thought it was because they did not want to bother and had better things to do!
I’m glad that Atwell knocked down the steroetype about the male reader not being smart enough to enjoy reading on the same level as girls. Some believe that boys are genetically dumb and this is why they don’t want to read.
I thought this was interesting when she wrote, “students who don’t enter high school as skilled, passionate, critical, habitual readers have an even slimmer chance of experiencing meaningful literacy, there or ever.” (Atwell, 110) I believe that this is a true statement and it makes sense when you think about the real statistic. THe average American reads less than 1 book a year!
I also liked her language arts blocks and the times she had for teaching certain lessons:
-Writing or reading mini lessons
– Independant Writing