Mini-Lesson Monday: Do Teens Read Seriously Anymore?

It’s the end of our nine weeks. Well, kinda. I have one class of English 3 students that are at midterm since they are on accelerated block, and I’ve got two classes of AP English Lang who I share with AVID every other day in a year-long class, so they are at about the 4.5 weeks mark. Talk about crazy trying to keep the pacing straight and everyone moving.

One thing I know:  All my readers need to revisit the goals they set for themselves the first week of school. We’re going to start with independent reading. I’ve seen a little too much of this lately:


Taken after exams when I suggested students use the time to read.

and not enough of this:


Daily routine: 15 minutes of independent reading

I set the standard high and ask my students to read three hours a week. This is difficult for busy teenagers who are not used to reading (and if we are honest, many are not used to completing any type of homework).

We will read this article this week “Do Teens Read Seriously Anymore?” and create our personal reading challenge cards. But before we do, I want to get students thinking about themselves as readers and what reading can, and should, mean to them and what they hope to accomplish in their lives.

Objective:  Interpret a quote on the importance of reading and connect it to my own reading life; construct a plan to help me meet my reading goals.

Lesson:  Students will select up two literacy/reading quotes and glue them into their writer’s notebooks. They will then think about their reading habits over the past several weeks of school and write a response to the quotes that connects their reading experiences (or not) and begin constructing a plan on what they can do differently in the upcoming weeks to either continue to grow as readers, or start to.

Follow-up: Later in the week we will also read “The Insane Work Ethic of Mark Cuban, Jeff Bezos, and 15 Other Powerful Leaders” and write a synthesis-type response using the two articles and their personal goals for reading.

Please share in the comments your ideas for getting and keeping students developing their reading lives.


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4 thoughts on “Mini-Lesson Monday: Do Teens Read Seriously Anymore?

  1. Try it Tuesday: Taking a line | November 1, 2016 at 6:29 am Reply

    […] figurative language and specific examples in our essays.  We’ve read about the importance of serious reading, and written one-pagers to defend, challenge, or qualify. Lately, we’ve studied the work of […]


  2. Mark T. Yang JR Anime/Manga/ETC October 24, 2016 at 6:12 pm Reply

    This’ll be an interesting, as I’m actually a sophomore student of Franklin High. But anyways, my suggestion for students to enjoy and to continue to read books is, introducing them to the word, “genre”. Knowing the word genre, and what kind of genres that are in a book is what usually keeps me in my interests.

    Let’s say, I enjoy mysterious books that make you wonder why things happen the way they are, like Fahrenheit 451 and The Giver (which can also go into utopian and the dystopian genre books). Or maybe not so mysterious, but action packed and probably the most recent books like the Divergent series, and The Maze Runner. Possibly introduce them to historical fiction or historical non-fiction, like Too Kill A Mockingbird (fiction) and, The Diary of a Young Girl (Non-Fiction/Anne Frank).

    Maybe introduce them to different kinds of books to find their main interests, like introducing to them chapter books, comics, Manga (Japanese comics), and even poetic story books (Ex. Shakespear) (If you can’t think of any Manga storied books, I’d recommend the comic, A Silent Voice)

    ( )

    And if anything, I’d recommend showing them a movie trailer that’s based off a book (although reading any book is better than watching any movie that was based off the book).

    I’m going to end my suggestion here, as it seems a bit long but hopefully this helps. -Mark Yang


  3. Robin Radlauer October 24, 2016 at 4:50 pm Reply

    Do you read at the same time they do? I find this has a very powerful effect on student reading behavior.


  4. paola ruocco October 24, 2016 at 8:46 am Reply

    Thank you for this and the photos – priceless and all too familiar!


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