WILMINGTON — Wilmington High School students in English 2 were invited by teachers to a “book tasting” last week to introduce them to dystopian novels.
The teachers — Mrs. Knoblauch, Mrs. Massie, Mrs. Moore and Mrs. Murphy — provided a fun and engaging way for students to explore and select novels that are relevant, relatable and meaningful to students and society.
“I love it when students engage in conversations about books!” said Mrs. Knoblauch. “Hearing them make literary and author purpose connections is what we strive for as educators, but then witnessing students deepening those connections to include personal and societal/thematic connections to themselves and others is truly inspirational and rewarding.”
The students rotated tables to explore a variety of novels prior to selecting the novel that will be read for the learning unit. Student Katelyn Walls said, “I enjoy the book tasting activity because it provides us with different novels and the freedom to select the novel.”
Students were provided a book tasting napkin to jot down their reactions and reflection after sampling each novel. “I appreciate the book tasting approach that allows us to look at different topics and explore what interests us,” said student Lilly Music.
After experiencing the book tasting, all of the students were provided a family letter to take home. The letter explained that the new unit uses high-interest novels with a variety of text complexities. Families are encouraged to review the list of novels with their child and assist them in selecting their novel.
When asked what teacher Ms. Moore enjoys most about the book tasting activity, she said she loved the challenge of finding a book for the student who claims he or she is not a reader.
“Once each teen is hooked into a book, it becomes a challenge to convince him or her to stop reading,” she said. “The students get mad when we tell them to put the books away, and that is every English teacher’s dream.”