Despite the fact that I should be writing final papers, I bought a new book this weekend and finished it last night: The Book Whisperer, by Donalyn Miller. Ms. Miller is a 6th grade Language Arts teacher who has developed and just about perfected a reading instruction method that has yielded phenomenal results with her students. The book chronicles her journey and shares insight and lessons about why kids read, how they can be supported as readers, and why reading is so important. Her intended audience is clearly other reading teachers, but it was engaging and information for someone like me who simply loves books and is interested in literacy.
In some ways, it is also a memoir of Ms. Miller as a reader. She describes "Miller Mountain"- a teetering bookshelf in her home that struggles under the tonnage of the books she plans to read. I smiled at that description as someone who has destroyed two different bookshelves by sheer book mass. She also discusses her reading habits and how she squeezes in extra time to read the books she loves.
I loved The Book Whisperer, and it also rekindled a desire in me to work to promote literacy and reading, especially with children and young people. I loved helping eager children select the perfect book this Saturday at local RIF book fair. These reminders are helpful to me as I continue my job search.
This blog has also helped me to realize that I love helping the right title find its way to an eager reader's hands. I hope to read through my stacks of books this summer to be able to offer better informed recommendations. Happy reading!