LibraryLady
3 years ago1,000+ Views
Attracting Reluctant Male Readers
A good summary of a session presented at ALA 2013, the authors share lots of strategies for getting boys to read. Some strategies that are tried and true in my library: ~ Displays! We always have two themed displays and one general shelf on the circulation desk. We haven't genrefied our library, so a display can be a less intimidating place to browse. ~ Student to student recommendations. This year we opened the student review option in our library catalog. I found students were much more likely to read a book if it had a review from another student, even if the review wasn't all that positive! I also have my student aides walk around when classes are in the library to suggest books. Half of my aides are boys, so it works out well. ~ Male role models! Using male teachers to suggest books for boys is extremely helpful. I gave the band teacher some biographies of musicians and a multivolume music encyclopedia to display in the band room. I put a sticky note in each book, and if a student wanted the book, the band teacher wrote the student's name and ID number, then put the note in my in box. Almost every book got checked out - some for the first time in years! ~ Highlight topics they want to read. I have a great forensics series that I book talk early in the year. It's never on the shelves. Likewise with the World War II and Desert Storm books. Reluctant readers are also often reluctant browsers, so walking a group to the shelves and pulling off cool nonfiction can really help. Other can't miss books include The Bloody History series, the You Wouldn't Want To... series and the Eyewitness books. Next year my goal is to get QR codes on the spines of all the books that have been student reviewed, or that we have in our book trailer YouTube channel. The chance to use a smart phone in school can motivate someone to check out a book. Whatever it takes to get reluctant readers engaged!
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