Teachers across all subjects, grade levels, and disciplines are tasked with promoting literacy. School administrators can take it upon themselves to help by creating school-wide initiatives to promote reading in their schools.
Best of all, promoting reading can be fun!
Here are five ways elementary, middle, and high school principals and their staff can create a fun, positive, and inclusive reading culture in their schools.
1. LET STUDENTS AND TEACHERS KNOW WHAT YOU ARE READING
Lead by example. Whether you post it online, through social media, or simply carry your book with you, announce to students and teachers what you are currently reading. The simple act of sharing your excitement and love of literature will permeate and show everyone you are all readers together.
2. BRING LOCAL AUTHORS IN TO SPEAK TO THE STUDENTS
Take a look at what authors live in your town or nearby cities and invite them to come speak at your school. It can be inspiring for students to see and hear from a person who wrote a book. The authors are bound to love reading too, so they can share their enthusiasm with your students. Celebrate writers and books as much as possible. You want to create a positive, loving culture towards literature, and this a perfect way to do it.
3. HOST A SCHOOL-WIDE READING COMPETITION
A little reward and incentive never hurt anybody. Set up a school-wide reading competition – which grade or class can read the most books in a controlled amount of time? Be sure to check in with teachers to see how students are progressing and champion those who continue to impress with their amount of reading. Remember, the real winner is every student who participates and learns to love reading. You can track the results in Castle Learning by creating simple knowledge checks using our literature sets or surveys for the contest. Our support team is famous for helping with creative projects.
4. HAVE A BOOK SWAP
While many schools have book sales, another way to help students and teachers find new reading material is have a planned book swap. Everyone brings in an old book and swaps it for one they haven’t read. This involves everyone and shows the magic of sharing books with each other.
5. SPOTLIGHT STUDENT READING RECOMMENDATIONS
Somewhere central in the school, maybe outside the Principal’s office, have a place where you can post a rotation of student book recommendations. This will make each reader feel special, that their opinion matters, and it will inspire other students to share their own favorite books.