Brown Bag Book Club

Years ago I was lucky enough to attend a Linda Holliman workshop.  It.was.AWESOME!!  She is such a hoot and her ideas are SO inspiring!!!  While she was explaining a few different ideas to us, one of them really got my attention.  She talked about how her kids would complete a readers/listening response on a lunch bag and then she’d fill the bags with popcorn and have the kids partner up and share what they wrote.  I LOVED that idea!!!  Since I’m such a big fan of book clubs, I decided to incorporate this idea and turn it into a book club…hence the birth of the “Brown Bag Book Club”.  Y’all…my kids are OBSESSED.  And I gotta say…I’m LOVIN’ it, too!!!

Here’s a little peek at this week’s Brown Bag Book Club…our first of the year!!

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So here’s how the book club works…

Choose a story to read at the beginning of the week.  This week, we read The Mitten. {We did a few whole group reader’s responses throughout the week…venn diagram, flow chart, story elements, etc.}  At some point during the week, have the kids fill out a graphic organizer/thinking map and glue it to a brown paper bag {lunch sack}.  I had my kids fill out a graphic organizer focusing on characters, setting, main idea, and author’s purpose.  Any kind of graphic organizer/thinking map/response to reading will do!

The kids held on to their paper bags until this afternoon {Friday}.  We ended up having an odd number of kids in the class today, so I grouped the kids into 3’s.  We talked about book clubs and their purpose…the kids were SO on board!  As I was passing out the popcorn for their bags, I had the kids talk to their groups about whether or not they liked the book, why, and what part of the book was their favorite.  I heard some GOOD discussions!

Once they had their popcorn, Brown Bag Book Club was in session!  I used these questions to guide discussion…

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I gave the kids about 3-5 minutes to discuss each question and then have one group share their thoughts.  They were SO into it!  I couldn’t believe how well the discussions really went.  It was so fun to hear my kids really “dissect” the book.  Of course, the popcorn pick-me-up really helped, too :) 

I plan on having the Brown Bag Book Club meet every Friday afternoon.  I’ll use a different set of guiding questions every week {depending on the book} and the graphic organizer will change, too!  I think we’ll be using a beginning/middle/end graphic organizer this week because that’s one of our week’s objectives.  And I’ll always serve popcorn!  The kids just LOVE it!!! 

This might be my most favorite Friday activity!!!  It’s an awesome way to end the week and the kids get SO into it all.  I HIGHLY recommend starting a book club of your own!!  And if you do start one, let me know!!!  I’d LOVE to hear how yours is organized!! 

35 comments:

  1. What a great idea!! Love it, and will have to try it with my kinders...we'll see how it goes. I love your blog...you have great ideas!

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  3. I love this idea...it's perfect for Friday's!

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  4. I love Linda!!!

    This is such a cool idea. I was just thinking about lack of snacks in my room, so if I do this, it would be perfect!

    Jennifer

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  5. Opps- it's late and I forgot
    Here are my photos of her workshop:

    http://www.kinderpond.com/holliman.html
    and another friends:
    http://www.abc123kindergarten.com/Site/Linda_Holliman_Resources.html

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  6. I love this idea. Thanks so much for sharing.

    Penny

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  7. I love book clubs in class. And this idea is great. I've never heard of doing it this way before. I will definitely try it out!

    Here is the way I did it (when I was still teaching 2nd grade)...I divided the students into groups of 5. Each person in the group had a job. The jobs were summarizer(summarized passage for the day), illustrator (illustrated passage for the day), wordsmith (found new or interesting words from the day's passage to look up definitions for or explain), discussion director (wrote questions about the passage for the day), and Travel tracker (kept up with the setting of the story as it changed). Anyway, we did the club one week a month. I would assign a portion of the story to my students to read each day and while they read (or after finishing reading) they completed the activity for the job they were assigned. They would then get in their groups and take turns leading the discussion based on what their jobs were. Sometimes they got the same job all week, sometimes they got a different job each day. But they loved it. We always culminated the week with a fun activity or project on Friday. When we read about Egypt, we used toilet paper to turn one another into mummies...when we read about puppet making, each group made a different type of puppet. It was always the highlight of reading each month! Oh, and the activities for each job varied. For example, if we were learning about author's purpose, the discussion director would need to include a question or two pertaining to that...if we were learning contractions the wordsmith would want to teach about some contractions found in the story...if we were learning about transitional words in writing then the summarizer would need to include those.

    Thank you for sharing your ideas with us all! I love it!

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  8. You are so amazing! Thank you so much for your ideas and your shares!
    I love this idea...may use it as a way to prepare for the story test on Friday's and use questions on the bag that will be covered in the test...hmmm...wheels are churning!
    Thank you!

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  9. This is such a great idea and a really fun and easy way to get kids talking and thinking about books! I am definitely going to be trying this out in my classroom- I think I might use our basal story for the week as our book, since we do so many activities with throughout the week. I can also match the response sheet for the bag to our comprehension strategy... I know my students are just going to love this!!

    Thanks for sharing!

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  10. I love this idea! I'm definitely trying it out with my kids...Thanks for sharing with us!

    -Gladys

    http://teachinginhighheels.blogspot.com

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  11. How do you find time to do everything! I really WANT to do this, but I have no idea where to fit it!!!!! HELLLLLPPPPPP!

    -Rachelle
    www.whattheteacherwants.blogspot.com

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  12. Wow! That is an amazing idea! I just love it. I can't wait to use it ASAP! I already have the bags. It would be a great way to finish off a unit. Thanks
    Laura
    www.laurasopenhouse.blogspot.com

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  13. Such a great idea! I, too, was lucky enough to attend one of her workshops and loved it. Thanks for sharing.

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  14. super cute and would totally work in my third grade class too!
    THANKS FOR SHARING.

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  15. love this!!!!! can you put a download of the sheet you used on your bags maybe??

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  16. LOVE THIS!! What a great idea. I love anything that gets my kiddos to discuss books. I can't wait to try it out.

    Jodi
    www.fun-in-first.blogspot.com

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  17. Ok! I decided how I can fit this into my hectic schedule! Thanks for the inspiration!
    *Every day after lunch I always read from our read-a-loud chapter book. Right now we are reading Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. What a great way to summarize the whole book....doing a Book Club!
    *After each chapter book we read, we are going to have a Book Club the next day!
    *This pans out to be about one book club per month or so! :)

    Thanks Cara!

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  18. love it love it love it! Gotta try it!
    Leslie
    www.fabinfirst.blogspot.com

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  19. What a great idea! I have been looking for a way to review our story of the week on Fridays before we have to take the dreaded comprehension test! This would be a great way to get the kids excited about what they are reading. I might even call the popcorn "brain food"!!! Thanks so much!

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  20. Awesome! I just passed this on to my two teammates who plan our reading lessons. Thank you so much!

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  21. I am loving this! I am already making them to go with our SF series and books that I love! I can't wait till Friday!

    Kristen
    first-grade-teachers.blogspot.com

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  22. Love this idea! We are starting a book club this week. I talked to my students about it today, and they are SO excited about it. Thanks so much for sharing all you do. This is my first year teaching, and I have made notes of several things on your blog. My students played Race to the Snowman today in a center and had so much fun! Thanks again for taking the time to share what you do in your class.

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  23. Hi! I love this! We do a Brown Bag Book Report on Fridays. In our students reading folder we include a simple reading response sheet (graphic organizer style). Students can choose a book to do a report on (reading folder book, library book, book from home) and fill out the organizer. On Fridays we glue our organizers to a brown bag and at the end of the day we eat popcorn and discuss our books from the week. My students LOVE it! And it has been a great way to involve parents as well. We do a lot of think aloud with this and they have gotten more and more detailed in their reports as we go.

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  24. I'm loving this idea! We have one day a week that we don't have any Related Arts, and it can make for a very long day! Thinking I may start using this book club on those days!! Thank you so much for the idea!

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  25. Just found this via LitLad and I LOVE the idea - esp the way it makes it "easy" for the kids to talk to each other about the books. No longer does it seem like a chore for school, but rather it seems like a treat. Brilliant! Will be sharing :-)

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  26. Hey, for what it is worth (from a teacher's aide only)....
    This year, I was asked to fill in for the 2nd grade book club at the elementary school where I work. The instructions were really basic: find what the kids are interested in reading, then help them find ways to take what they read about and apply it in their own lives. We've been doing tons of science experiments so far (based on this they've been reading), and now we're about to launch a series on exploring with our senses. You got me to thinking that maybe I'd have to blog about it so the various teachers and parents will know what we are doing in book club...and hopefully it will help others come up with ideas. Thanks so much for all that you are doing and how encouraging this is!!!!

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  27. What a fab idea! Thank you so much for sharing. I tested it out with one group last week and as you could probably guess, they all LOVED it! I'll be giving it a try with all of my groups this week. Wish me luck!

    Sharon
    http://kindercuriosity.blogspot.com/

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  28. I love this idea! We do a whole school book buddy day once a month...I'm going to try incorporating some of these ideas to make those times more focused and meaningful. I think the popcorn will be a hit! Thank you!
    Jenny

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  29. WOW great ideas. Thanks so much. I started this last week, but we did it with our 4th grade Buddies. It was a great experience for both. The older kids helped the younger ones with deeper thinking of the book. I look forward to doing this weekly.

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  30. I love some of your suggestions for the book club. I am thinking of starting book clubs in my classroom this upcoming year. Please tell the best way to start it. I have never done book club in my classroom before and am anxious to learn!

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  31. I love this idea. Do you have specific questions you use to guide your groups? or different templates you've used for your book bags? I'd love to buy a bundle similar to this, if you have some put together from each week...sounds like fun!

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  32. love this idea to do with my 1st grade buddies...

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  33. Love this! Do you have a packet with the different graphic organizers/tags you use on the bags? I would love to purchase it you do!

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