When I first started using novel studies, I felt like I had to have elaborate packets of text-specific comprehension questions for each book we read. I was concerned about comprehension, accountability, and assessment. However, time and experience has taught me that students really thrive on choice and that there are ways to still provide rigorous reading practice without novel-specific activities. Enter, literacy choice boards!
How Literacy Choice Boards Work
Each choice board has a variety of activities that appeal to different learning styles. As a teacher, I determine how many activities students need to complete from each board and if there are any requirements. For example, sometimes I might ask students to select one activity from each column or row.
Then students complete the activities in their reading journals during independent reading time. These activities can also become great discussion points during reading groups or centers when students share their journals. The work provides me valuable information about students’ comprehension and can also be used as assessments if needed.
Ready-To-Use Literacy Choice Boards
If you’re just starting out, differentiated choice boards are a great choice. My students always have these in their reading journals. The boards include dozens of prompts for responding to text and can be used for independent responses or literature circles. They meet many different learning styles and cover Bloom's Taxonomy too.
I also have two free choice boards for incorporating writing and vocabulary into your novel study. Each one has 9 different and creative ways to respond to almost any novel.
You can download all four literacy choice boards for FREE here!
When you want your students to practice specific reading skills with their novel, I recommend using skill-based novel study choice boards. There are 33 different options here to practice fiction and nonfiction skills, including 5 specific genre related boards.
More Ways To Respond To Text
If you need even more options, my students also love these reading response task cards. I use these to engage students in thoughtful discussions and written responses about their reading all year long. The goal of these cards is to move your students beyond basic, literal understanding of what they are reading and branch out into inferential, critical thinking. Plus just like choice boards, they work with almost any book!