I had fun participating in the local junior high's 6th grade read-in on Friday night. Parents and kids attended in their slippers. The librarian prepared a nice presentation on some of the Lone Star Reading list books and Newbery winners.
I got to book talk some new books including Pond Scum, Babymouse, London Calling, Hugging the Rock, Troll Bridge, Monster Blood Tattoo, and the Jimmy Coates series by Joe Craig. There was not enough time to do all the books in my bag but I handed out Jimmy Coates bookmarks which seemed to please the guys. We turned off the lights and by the light of my Coleman lantern, I told some stories and did a reading from my favorite read-aloud. I wasn't planning on reading but one of my old students commented to me, "No one reads to us anymore Mrs. P."
I was impressed at the number of boys in attendance. There seemed to be equal numbers of guys and girls. I was also impressed that parents would give up their Friday night in the recliner (my favorite landing zone) to come to the event with their kids.
The evening reinforced what I have noted from my sojourns into middle school libraries: junior high readers really want to talk about the books they are reading. Hoorah for librarians who make those opportunities available for their students and hoorah for junior high teachers who still take time to read to the kids. May your numbers increase!