Today, we finally got to put our plan into action. We visited Jim Thorpe Fundamental Elementary School in Santa Ana, and it was quite the experience. We worked with Mrs. Rausch, the librarian, and we spoke to two fourth-grade classes, each of about 35 kids. In order to plan for our first “outing” we made a poster describing the three general steps to pick out the perfect book. To be completely honest, we were so nervous before going to this presentation. We were worried that the kids would get bored quickly, or that none of them would show any interest in reading or what we were telling them. So, you can imagine our relief when, upon being asked how many kids were interested in reading, almost every student in both classes raised their hands. After talking to them about why books are so awesome and how to pick out the perfect book, we helped the kids find books in their library. It really excited us to see how eager these children were about reading and books. Overall, this day has definitely been a success. So here’s our process for picking out the perfect book!
- Consider your favorite books, movies, television shows, or video games. If you like a book by one author, then consider reading another book by the same author. If you like a movie, chances are that that movie was either based on a book or there is a book with a very similar plot line. If you like a certain television show, sometimes there are spin-off books based on that television show, especially if the television show is aimed at younger kids. Stick with genres that you know you like, and you can be sure to find a book that will satisfy your interests!
- Consider the cover. Sure, we all have heard the old adage, “Don’t judge a book by its cover.” And this is true . . . to a certain extent. But the fact is, if you really don’t like anything to do with baseball, and the book cover is a picture of a kid playing baseball, chance are you won’t like the book.
- Read the summary. This one is probably the best way to figure out if the book is for you. A great way to figure out the general subject and plot of a book is to read the summary. If the summary sounds interesting, then try the book. If it doesn’t sound interesting, then the book is probably not for you.