Workshop Wednesday - A Quick Idea for Reading Notebooks

Hi everyone! I have made it through my first 2 days of teaching - woohoo!! I have a great group of students and I think we are going to have a good year.

I am just stopping by to share a quick ideas with you if you (like me) are still in the beginning stages of setting up your reading workshop. For more great ideas be sure to check out and link up with Jivey for her linky...

This is my first using reading bins for my students. Here they are lined up nicely by the window (before students arrived and they become unaligned!).

So far we have gone book shopping and now have books in our bins. I took a picture of each student reading to label their bin with (right now they are in numerical order but I do not think that will last!).

And today we decorated the notebook. Each student was given a name label to place roughly in the middle of the notebook. Then I gave them 3 different Scholastic book order forms (SeeSaw, Lucky and Arrow). I do not use my September book orders because we have a book fair in two weeks - but I usually have tons of extra order forms anyway. Students cut out books they were interested in and made a book collage. Then I put clear tape over their work to protect it (idea by Jivey!!).
 I love the way they are turning out (for the most part). I love that I can get a sense of their interests and books to get for our class just by looking at their covers. I told them to make a collage but some students only picked out a few books and placed them neatly around the label - at first I sent them back to add more but then gave myself a talking to and said no - it needs to reflect their choices not how I would want it to look (covered completely in books) - so I let it go and taped them up!

I also loved this activity because the kids were so excited to look at the order forms (as always) and they were talking to each other about books, and which ones they have read and which ones they wanted - it was a fun way to prepare for reading workshop for sure. Here they are in action.


  1. I love this idea for your reading notebooks! I have tons of extra book orders and this is a great way to get a snapshot of your students' interests. I think I will definitely have to use this idea! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I love this idea. I should really do this. Last year I did an activity with this group where they cut out the books they liked and made a poster. Then they wrote little persuasion pieces to their parents about why they should purchase these books for them or why they thought they wanted them. I enjoyed that activity, but like I said, I already did that with this same group, so this would be something fun to shake things up and use the extra book orders I have everywhere. Thanks for sharing!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  3. cute idea using scholastic book catalogs. I use time for kids and scholastic news as well.

    Ms. Chae Charges In

  4. Great idea AMC! I think this is a great way to hear about the books the students are reading. I'm going to try it as we get going on our reader's notebooks.
    Thanks for the idea!

    Coffee Cups and Lesson Plans

  5. I love this! I always had them put pictures of themselves but this is a great spin on it! It looks great!!

    I hope all is going well for you!!
    Collaboration Cuties

  6. Your reading notebooks look great! Do you modpodge over them?

    1. You could use modpodge - but modpodge and I do not have the best relationship :)
      I used book tape and when that ran out clear packing tape - covered the front and wrapped the tape over to the inside cover.

  7. LOVE!!!! We usually just decorate the writing notebook, but I'm thinking maybe I need to have them go decorate the reading notebooks too! This is so great. Thank you for sharing and linking up!
    ideas by jivey
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  8. What a great way to decorate their notebooks and see what types of books they like reading!

  9. Love this idea! Great way to recycle those book orders and personalize their reading journals!!! Thanks for sharing.


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