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Reading in the Wild: The Book Whisperer's Keys to Cultivating Lifelong Reading Habits Paperback – November 4, 2013

ISBN-13: 978-0470900307 ISBN-10: 047090030X Edition: 1st

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Reading in the Wild: The Book Whisperer's Keys to Cultivating Lifelong Reading Habits + The Book Whisperer: Awakening the Inner Reader in Every Child + The Writing Thief: Using Mentor Texts to Teach the Craft of Writing
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (November 4, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 047090030X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470900307
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.9 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #57,915 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Amazon.com Review


Eight Ways for Parents and Teachers to Foster Wild & Lifelong Reading Habits

by Donalyn Miller


1. Model daily reading habits. As literacy expert Stephen Krashen reminds us, “Children read more when they see other people reading.” Talk with children about what you are reading and why you find reading personally interesting and meaningful.

2. Set aside time for daily reading. If we value reading, we must make time for it. Children who read at least 20 minutes a day score in the top range on reading tests and express more motivation and interest in reading. Even short blocks of time every day are better than bursts of reading on a occasional basis.

3. Carry a book with you everywhere. When packing for trips or running errands, throw books and magazines into the suitcase or back seat. Carrying something to read helps ward off “reading emergencies”—those times when you are stuck waiting without anything to do. The number one way adult readers rack up reading time is stealing short reading breaks in between other obligations. Carrying a book with you shows children how to steal this reading time.

4. Provide a wide variety of reading material. Fiction and nonfiction, print and online magazines, graphic novels and comics—children need access to lots of texts that match their interests and reading ability. You never know what book or topic might engage a child with reading.

5. Read aloud with children. Sharing books with children—even teenagers—reinforces that reading is important and something you find personally rewarding. Through reading aloud, you send pleasure messages about reading and can share books with children that they might not be able to read on their own. With older children, reading together can provide a launching point for discussions and help you connect on a regular basis. Burdened with homework and after school activities, many teens stop reading for pleasure. Reading together can keep them invested.

6. Visit the library often. Beyond free access to thousands of books, libraries offer qualified librarians and staff who can help match reading material to your child’s interest and locate online and print resources to support children’s needs. Most libraries host reading events and programs like summer reading clubs, too.

7. Celebrate all reading. Children read more when they are given choices in what they read. When reading for pleasure, children should control their own book selection with your personal limits on content and topics the only restrictions. Do not push children to read harder books, abandon picture books and comics, or limit their choices by reading levels when selecting pleasure reading books at the library or bookstore.

8. Limit screen time. The more time children spend using electronic devices and watching television, the less they read. While children need digital literacy skills, reading websites and surfing online don’t provide the same vocabulary development or reading stamina that reading books and magazines do. If children read e-books on electronic devices, shut off Internet access and limit other features during daily reading time.

Review

“…extended information here that applies to today’s Common Core Standards-based classroom environment,…this work is jam-packed  with highly useful information that is adaptable for various grade levels and teaching styles….essential for the practitioner or preparing practitioner looking for verified approaches to reading that will engage all students.”—Library Journal, December 2013


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More About the Author

Donalyn Miller has worked with a variety of upper elementary and middle school students and currently teaches fifth grade at O.A. Peterson Elementary in Fort Worth, Texas. In her popular book, The Book Whisperer, Donalyn reflects on her journey to become a reading teacher and describes how she inspires and motivates her middle school students to read 40 or more books a year. In her latest book, Reading in the Wild, Donalyn collects responses from 900 adult readers and uses this information to teach lifelong reading habits to her students. Donalyn currently facilitates the community blog, The Nerdy Book Club and co-writes a regular column for Scholastic's Principal-to-Principal Newsletter. Her articles about teaching and reading have appeared in publications such as Education Week Teacher, The Reading Teacher, Educational Leadership, and The Washington Post.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Great ideas for my classroom and to instill a love for reading!
Dee Abrams
There are several books I could and would recommend but this one is a must for every educator and every administrator.
Sandra K. Stiles
If you have read Donalyn Miller's "the Book Whisperer," this is a MUST have/read!
Sheila Frei

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Lehman on November 5, 2013
Format: Paperback
Donalyn does it again. Just when you think you have your reading instruction up and running, students reading more than in the past, books passing around your room at light speed.... Donalyn challenges us with the simple question: Are we really teaching readers if they only read with us?

Comparing a survey of readers "in the wild" to classrooms practices that either promote or discourage reading growth, Donalyn and Susan provide real classroom strategies and lots of support for helping you bridge the gap from students who read wildly only during your course or your year, to students that truly are becoming readers.

Inspirational, as I've come to find all of Donalyn's work.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By George Hoeppner on December 9, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I expected the book to be closer to The Book Whisperer in its content. Where Book Whisperer was
the philosophical piece to why reading, and encouraging the love of reading, was important, Reading
in the Wild offered more hands-on materials for working in the classroom. As a retired teacher, I found
the first book more thought provoking. Both are important if we think one purpose of school is to foster
life long readers.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer M. on November 29, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As Donalyn Miller, a.k.a. the Book Whisperer, reflected on her teaching, she realized that some of her students, despite being wonderful readers, were actually dependent readers. They didn’t continue the reading habits they’d developed in her classroom. She asked herself, “Why did they still need a teacher to orchestrate their reading lives?” In other words, “Why weren’t they wild readers?”

A wild reader is defined as someone “who incorporates reading into her personal identity to the degree that it weaves into her life along with everything else that interests her.” After surveying readers, Miller concludes that wild readers have 5 things in common. They: dedicate time to read; self-select reading material; share books & reading with others; have reading plans; and show preferences for genres, authors & topics.

Each chapter of this book explores one of these habits in detail and offers practical guidance on how teachers can help students develop the habits they need to truly become wild readers.

The premise of this book is simple, yet powerful: "Reading in the wild should be the purpose of every classroom." Just think what schools might look like if <i>every</i> person who worked in the school believed that and worked together to make it a reality?

Donalyn Miller is an important voice in education. Every teacher should read and talk about her books. Our schools would be better places for it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Karla Berg Walker on May 31, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Love this book and the first book, The Book Whisperer. The author confirms what I know about helping children to fall in love with reading. She provides a rationale for independent reading and solid research about independent reading and the achievement of students. The descriptions in the book make you feel as if you are in a conversation with the author. I had the opportunity to hear the author speak and she is inspiring in the book and in person. She has an excellent website and Facebook page. Highly recommend this book and the author!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amanda on May 9, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Refreshing! Much of it is common sense and I had many "duh" moments, but it reminded me of what's important in the classroom. I highly recommend it to anyone whose teaching needs a pick-me-up!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Amy on July 13, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Love the ideas for promoting and supporting students as life long readers. Although I am a librarian and not a classroom reading teacher, I have found this a very valuable read.
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By Sanchez on August 17, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I first read the first book, The Book Whisperer, in nearly a single sitting and was very intrigued to read this one as well. Friends told me it was more of the implementation plan for Donalyn's theory and practice, so I think that is what I was expecting and may have had too high of expectations. It took too long for me to read this, which just meant I wasn't as captivated by it. Still an interesting read, but I felt it was more of a story sharing book than anything.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dargrace on January 31, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I own and reference The Book Whisperer, Donalyn Miller's first book for use with my upcoming role as a teen book club leader. Her insights are classroom tested and she is rewarded with "wild readers" who are those who read many genres and independently for life. I am a wild reader myself. It makes my heart beat a little faster to enter a book store knowing the treasures inside. I recommend this book to educators and parents who desire the kids they are in contact with to read more often and with desire and purpose. Donald Miller is a book sage. She offers insights on how to interest a student in different genres as how to recognize a slow or uninspired reader. I will be referencing this book as well in the future. I also bookmarked many sites she listed of book lists and blogs so I have even more information. Thanks so much for the shared wisdom. This book will be a great help to me with the students.
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