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“One does not simply read books…one climbs inside and lives there” – Unknown

Can you tell that I’m mostly in summer mode? Better late than never, right?  Today’s post is actually on a different topic than usual for “Motivational Mondays”:  Reading.

I was on the Teaching Thinking Facebook page yesterday and they had so many cute quotes about summer reading that I got inspired!

What does reading have to do with motivation?  Well, if I’m honest, a lot of the inspiration I have for my posts comes from books I’ve read, quotes I’ve seen, or lengthy discussions with friends about life questions.  Books come up a lot!  Since we’re in full summer swing, I’d like to suggest that you take the time to take a break, find time to laugh – and read!


3 Ways To Get Kids You Teach To Read


Are you teaching ESL, or another second language? Last time I ran a survey, over 85% of you are. So, I thought I’d write down a few of my thoughts on getting kids to love reading.  Even the ones who just can’t seem to get into the groove of keeping up their reading skills can develop a love for reading.

1. Let Them Choose The Book 

Can you remember a time when you had to read a book you just couldn’t get into?  Don’t do that to your students, as much as possible. Of course, if you’re teaching in a big classroom or a specific course curriculum you may not have a choice.

As much as possible, let students choose their books. You’d be surprised how helpful this little tip is. I’ve had so many students surprised that I let them choose the book (or even choose from a pile of books).  Also, if you start a book and they are really not feeling it, start a new one if time allows.

It’s so important to be teaching personally relevant content if you want to foster a love of reading!  Remember that graphic novels and even comic books can be a great start for English as a Second Language learners.  Kids books (favourites they’ve read in their first language) can work wonders, too.


2. Make A Fun, Relevant Project

I love creating novel study projects!  There is so much you can do – from posters to presentations to writing a sequel to making a blog post or a video.  You can even link some non-fiction content into a project about fictional characters.

By the way, I’ll be making fun novel study packs in my Teachers Pay Teachers store (coming soon!). It’s one of my summer projects, so I truly hope to be able to provide you with a store full of goodies soon!

For now, check out the free printables library to grab some freebie lesson plans on short stories, TED Talks and other fun topics.


3. Encourage Book Discussion with Friends and Family

Motivational Monday 90 Friendship

Now, most people have probably had someone read to them as a child, but did your family (or group of friends) ever continue reading together? I have to say – I have never joined a book club, but it’s on my list!  Even though I’m not in a book club, I do discuss books I read with friends, and I get so many great recommendations from them, too.

Sometimes, it’s way too easy to get caught up in the world of touchscreens, Netflix, app-based news – and forget to read.  Ask your best friend what the last book they read was, and see if you’re up for reading it, too.




How I Make Time To Read

I Don't Have Time

But I don’t have time!  That’s the best excuse, right?  I’ve used it myself – but I’ve realized that it’s simply not true.  It’s all about priorities. So, how can you prioritize reading without messing up your schedule too much?


Here’s what I do:
    • I read on planes and in airports  – Why not take advantage of that dead time? Let’s be honest, there aren’t too many flights with great movies (budget flights, anyway!). Crack open the latest novel after you pass  through security.
    • It’s on my goals list –   Yes, I set a goal for a number of books per year.  Sometimes I even add in how many I’d like to read in each language.
    • I use reading to fuel my other goals –  For example, I read a book called The Plant Paradox on the flight to Canada, to help me learn more about weight loss, eating vegan in a healthy way, and more about the biology of our food.
    • My friends know about the books I read – and I know all about the ones they do! You’d be surprised how much fun it is when you’ve read the same books. Whether you’re talking with fellow English teachers or not, it’s so interesting to describe character’s reactions to situations, or theories in a non-fiction (such as a nutrition) book.

What’s the last book you read? Do you have any summer reading recommendations for us? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Have a lovely (and relaxing!) week


P.S. Photography fans, the photo for today’s post (and poster!) is one I took in Vancouver about a week ago

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