Why Assign Book Reports
Book reports are something we can all remember writing in our time as a student.
Students tend to feel a certain way about book reports. Either they really enjoy them – or they really don’t enjoy them.
This opinion typically trends with the students who enjoy reading vs the students who do not enjoy reading.
But research shows that students who take the time to write about what they read become better readers and better communicators.
Is there a way to encourage all of our students to enjoy the process of writing a book report?
Why You Should Use Book Reports
As I’m sure you’ve experienced yourself, you can’t effectively communicate on a topic that you know nothing about. Therefore, students gain a better understanding of the content assigned by default when creating a book report.
I always found book reports to be one of the easiest methods of understanding how much my students were truly comprehending. Tests can give you information, but any time a student has to write out what they’ve learned is a time for you to gain some good information. Plus, book reports can be a way to break the monotony of testing and give students a chance to be creative.
Presenting a book report to the class is a great way to encourage your students to speak in front of the class, building confidence in them and allowing students to learn from other voices.
Types Of Book Reports
There are three different types of book reports that I liked to use in the classroom. They all have their own pros and cons, which I will list for you here.
An essay book report is a simple and effective way to understand what your students are learning.
The biggest pro is that you can vary the content or length of the report, giving you more of an opportunity to scaffold based on your students’ needs.
The con of essays is that, if used too frequently, they can feel incredibly boring and flat.
Giving your students a chance to jazz up their book reports is a fun way to change up the traditional essay format.
The pro to this type of book report is that you get to combine writing with art, which motivates some students who might not have cared as much before. Another pro is the chance to work on fine motor skills.
The con of craftivities is that they can be time-consuming. You could also find some students focusing too much on the craft portion and not enough on the book report portion.
A digital book report can be something super simple, like an essay in Google Docs. But it can also be more exciting and interactive.
My favorite pro of digital book reports is that they tend to be more interesting and less time-consuming than other options.
The con is that digital book reports take time to create.
How To Make Digital Book Reports
Digital book reports can be a simple document with textboxes and transparent moving pieces.
Or it can be interactive with buttons that link slides. This format breaks the report into steps and allows for more information.
Google Slides™ is my favorite platform to use when making digital book reports.
When it comes to making digital book reports, here are the first four things I do.
- Decide on the criteria for the report
- Map out the concepts for the slide flow
- Create a student checklist to complete the activity
- Develop a rubric to grade the assignment
Once you’ve done this, you are ready to collect your images and begin making your digital book report.
I’ll be honest with you, making these reports takes time. However, once you’ve made them, you’ll be able to use them again and again.
My Digital Book Reports
Do you want to use digital book reports but don’t want to make them yourself? I’ve made 9 different digital book reports that are available to you in my shop.
I created them so they can be used with any book, making them far more versatile and easy to differentiate.
Each report covers specific literary elements, as well as spiraling the introductory concepts for review. Some of the topics included are:
- Conflict & Theme Breakfast Buffet Digital Craftivity Book Report
- Tone & Mood Candy & Caramel Apple Digital Craftivity Book Report
- Character Traits & Characterization Doughnuts Digital Craftivity Book Report
- Point of View Lunch Box Digital Craftivity Book Report
As I mentioned, I prefer working in Google Slides™, so these digital book reports are housed in that platform. All of the slides are hyperlinked to others, making the report interactive.
You can pick up your copy of my digital book reports by clicking on the photo below. They are available both individually and as a bundle. And, please, let me know if you have any questions about them; I’d love to help.
Do you have questions about digital book reports? Just shoot me an email!
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