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Friday, January 15, 2016

Tales of a Fifth Grade Book Discussion: Part 1: Preparation

With only the slightest of apologies to Judy Blume, I am about to embark upon a book discussion journey of epic proportions. I am one of the volunteer leaders for my son’s 5th Grade lunch time book club. The book will be read and discussed over a series of 8 meetings.

We are reading Echo by . The title was picked months ago, so I was so glad to see Echo receive a Newbery Honor distinction earlier this month. The kids have already read and enjoyed Esperanza Rising as part of a previous grade’s curriculum, but this honor for Echo adds even more positive buzz to the impending discussions.

Since I am a book discussion expert, I offered to help out by creating a study guide for all of the groups. [It’s a big school and the lunch time book clubs are popular, so my group is not the only one; not to mention that I have 2 other parents on my team.] Working on this guide also made me realize that sharing this entire adventure here on the blog would be useful to all of you who lead book discussions.

So this is Part 1 of what will be at least a 9 part series of posts. I will title each “Tales of a Fifth Grade Book Discussion,” with the part number following [as you see above] and will use the tag “fifth grade book club” to make finding it easier on everyone-- myself included.

Not only will I be sharing general information and thoughts about the specific discussion, but son has also agreed to interject his thoughts about it all. My goal here is to share both the discussion and the process so that all of my readers, no matter what age level they serve, can take away something useful to use with their book groups.

The first book club meeting will be on January 25th when we will distribute the books and get the kids excited for being in the book club.

But let;s not get ahead of ourselves. First we must prepare for our journey.

Here is the link to the comprehensive book discussion guide I have compiled for Echo.

I look forward to chronicling this adventure for all of you. I promise to be honest and to share our failures as well as our successes, but most importantly, I promise to help you to serve your book discussion patron better as a result of these posts.

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