Turning a negative situation into a positive.
The Page Turning Warriors is a group of elementary students that practice four components of reading- listening, speaking, reading, and writing. COVID has been detrimental in education, especially when it comes to literacy skills. Husband and wife duo, Jerry and Ashley White, an elementary librarian and reading specialist respectively, knew some students were going to need extra help to help close the 'COVID gap'. The challenge was going to be how to instruct students on skills they were lacking, but doing so in a unique manner that was hands on, as well as each having a feeling of accomplishment.
Books are the go to resource!
When speaking about literacy, it is vital that children have the opportunity to practice all literacy skills, not just reading. Books were going to be our number one resource, but knew we had to come up with a clever way of 'sneaking' writing into the instruction. After all, children may not necessarily mind to read, but when writing is involved, often times children can shut down, especially when they have to answer specific questions, rather than writing creatively. That is when the idea of writing book reviews came into play. Children choosing a book that interests them would allow each to practice the four components we were aiming for -
read the book,
listen to it read aloud,
writing a review,
(speaking) sharing the review with others.
Social media can be an amazing thing.
Everything was coming together. We were going to turn a situation that was out of our control (COVID loss) into an opportunity that was not only unique, but even more importantly, children would be using all literacy skills, without really knowing they were using them!
Although there are thousands of books in our elementary library, we wanted to give the students something extra special-- new books! When thinking about how much that would cost, we thought about reaching out to authors, especially upcoming authors, on social media to see if anyone would be willing to donate books to our new program. The generosity that is out there, was, and still is truly amazing! In a little less than a month, an idea went from, just that, an idea, to a group of hundreds of authors joining us, donating their books they worked so hard on, to be reviewed by The Page Turning Warriors.
The PTW Spotlight Books
The amount of books that were donated and being delivered to the school each day was truly amazing. We knew we could not just let the reviews happen and the books lay around. So came, The PTW Spotlight Books, a new section in our elementary library that would house all books that are donated and reviewed by the group for other children in our school to check out to take home and share with their family, just like any other book in our library. Right along side each book will be the reviews that were written by the members of the group.
A partnership unlike any other.
Not only are books coming in each day from these amazing and generous authors, but they are interested in virtual and in-person author visits with our students as well!
We can not wait to see where these partnerships and the future of The Page Turning Warriors takes us!
The Page Turning Warriors