The traditional book report format is definitely not my favorite. Forcing kids to write a summary and/or reflection about their book often feels dull…and, in my opinion, may sometimes lessen a student’s love of reading.
There are so many alternatives out there that are more engaging to consider (10 ideas listed below)! Any of the below choices could be adapted to work in a book club setting as well. You could also have students choose their own culminating activity as they finish their book club. Remember our purpose as teachers: to encourage and help grow our students’ love for reading!
Have your students write an acrostic poem that represents a relevant word or message about the text.
Using sites like Grooveshark, have your students create playlists of songs that represent each character in their book.
Have students use iMovie or Animoto to create a book trailer/book review to share with their classmates.
Have students create a travel brochure to “sell” the setting and characters that a potential “vacationer” can experience on a trip into the book’s location.
Have students bring in 3-5 artifacts that represent different aspects of the story and have them explain why they choose them.
Have your students write an advice column for a character’s problem in the story.
Have your students create a billboard ad that advertises their book. They can use programs like Canva.
Have your students design an original book cover, complete with a new title and blurb for the back of the book.
Blind Date with a Book
Give your students plain paper that is not see-through, such as butcher paper, and have them each wrap the book they read like a present. Have them write words or short phrases that describe the book on the paper without giving away the title of the book or its author (and, of course, no spoilers).
Have students condense the book they read into a comic strip/graphic novel or a picture book. Challenge them to tell the whole story in the new format, not just one section of the book.
I hope these ideas help you further grow your students’ love for reading and writing!
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