Sunday, March 13, 2011

March is Reading Month, Tip #13: Read a Magazine

Read a magazine!

Once in a graduate class, a student kvetched to Lucy Calkins that her kids didn't want to read during Reading Workshop. Lucy just looked at her and said, "Looks like you need to get different books."


Sometimes when readers are stuck, some different books will help. And sometimes some magazine reading may be in order. When readers are working with periodicals, they will not abandon books. It is a different kind of reading. And reading different things, in my personal and professional experience, serves as a rallying point for reading. Reading begets reading.

So today, pick up a magazine. Try a new magazine. Fran just learned he likes Click! and Ask and Sports Illustrated for Kids. But there's still Ranger Rick and Highlights and Kids Discover. And our library keeps oodles of back-issues and lets you take out magazines for a week.

I remember as a graduate student --my brain full of Louise Rosenblatt, Marie Clay, John Dewey, and Reggio Emilia-- sticking to magazines as reading material on plane trips. My brain was full from the other reading; the magazines gave it a rest. I remember getting early copies of Real Simple when Blaine was putting it on the web from a dinky house on North Jefferson Street. I remember Blaine's joy when we finally subscribed to Atlantic Monthly. I remember reading everything that came in the house: from alumni magazines to grocery ads from age 7 and on.

Magazines nurture readers in an entirely different way than books. So check out, borrow, or buy some magazines.

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