The Breakfast Book Bistro
House B Language Arts
WHO: Every student in House B Language Arts will choose two (2) books (fiction, nonfiction, drama, poetry) to independently read and review in written form. We will provide you with a “fabulous suggested reading list” to help you choose books that are recommended and appropriate for seventh-graders. We will help you choose books that meet your reading ability and interest level. We will also give you plenty of samples of book reviews so that you see how to break apart a book into its smaller parts (character, plot, setting, illustration, etc) and write about these parts with sensitivity and understanding.
WHAT: You will complete a written review of each book you read. Each review is worth 50 points. (Rubric attached). This entire assignment is worth 100 points. For our “A” students, you cannot achieve an “A” this quarter if you don’t complete this assignment. For our students on the other end, it is mathematically certain that you cannot pass this quarter if you do not complete this assignment. Therefore, it is in every student’s best interest to take this assignment very seriously.
WHEN: From now until March 11, 2005, every Friday will be devoted to in-class reading and working on your book reviews. Be prepared every Friday to bring your book(s), your book review packet, and pen and paper. You may NOT work on other projects during this time. Mrs. Hanlon and I are here to answer questions, to do adult-edits of your reviews…you name it, we’re here for it. We will have “checkpoints” along the way to help you manage your time effectively. (Calendar attached).
DUE ON?: Both reviews are due not later than Friday, March 18, 2005.
Take out your agendas RIGHT NOW and mark this date on your calendars. Our stamper will now do a quick fly-by and stamp your books with March 18 clearly noted. Go stamper!
Additionally, the culminating event of this unit is the “Breakfast Book Bistro,” which will be discussed later. (Don’t look yet, we’ll get there together).
HOW: There will be two ways to complete the writing requirement of the assignment.
1. Our fabulous language arts House B website. “What fabulous language arts House B website?” you ask. We have set up an interactive website just for this assignment and this House. The web address is: www.houseofgann.com/houseofgann (and follow the links for “Book Bistro”). You may post your reviews on this website and gain some valuable knowledge in using technology for educational purposes. This website is linked from Greenbriar’s home page, so you can also find it that way (thank Miss Rossman when you see her, okay?) Are there disciplinary penalties for misusing the website or for putting inappropriate material on the website? You bet your bippee—and this is not something you want to test me on, or else you’ll be seeing me, Mrs. Hanlon, Mr. Clark, and your parents in a conference room having a very unpleasant conversation. Consider yourself warned.
2. Plain old pen and paper. Of the two methods of completing your assignment, this is the less desirable. We would really encourage you to use the Internet in the Media Center, at your local library, or perhaps through a family member or friend to complete your reviews. However, we also know that not everyone has Internet access, and we want you to be successful in this unit. We will accept written book reviews and they will be weighted the same as the interactive reviews. All the other rules you know and love apply—it must be written NEATLY in blue or black pen or typed; font should be 12 or 14 point Times New Roman or Courier; and of course, it MUST be on time.
THE BIG EVENT: A Breakfast Book Bistro is actually what we snobby teachers call a “literacy event.” Other people might call it “book sharing” or “live book reviewing.” Mrs. Hanlon and I have scheduled an entire morning—and an entire meal—for your Breakfast Book Bistro on March 24, 2005 (the last day of school before Easter break). We already have many volunteers lined up to help (plus some big surprises we are working on!). Mr. Spisak, Mr. Clark, and the teachers in House B are also supporting our event. We are going to invite your parents and other adults to share the experience. More information about that is forthcoming in the near future.
What happens at a book bistro? Eight (8) or so students sit at a table, have breakfast, and orally review for each other one (1) of the books they have read for the unit. An adult volunteer will sit at each table and facilitate. You will be given forms to complete so that you can keep track of books you might want to read based on your friends’ reviews. You may use a copy of your written review to assist you in your presentation of your book. You will be partnered with students from other classes, so that you really get a different perspective on what books other seventh-graders are reading. You should bring the book you’re reviewing with you…so you will want to have a copy of it from your local bookstore or library.
Don’t panic! We have a long time before the event, and we will frequently remind you to budget your time, stay organized, and plan. Right now, just pick two books that you think you will want to read and get to it!
MATERIALS YOU WILL NEED: (i.e. get organized now!)
A folder marked “Breakfast Book Bistro,” which you will bring to class every Friday (no, I don’t care what color it is!!)
All the handouts we give you (NOTHING GETS THROWN OUT)
2 books of your choice
Be this guy:
“I already have my two books planned!”