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Have Students Determine Their Own Class Book Award Categories

By Beth Newingham on July 27, 2012
  • Grades: 3–5

Once my students understand how the book award categories  will work in our classroom, they create their own categories.

Every other month, students suggest new categories. I write down all of the students' ideas, and they vote on the categories they like best. Each student can vote for three categories, and the five categories with the most votes become the final categories in which students will nominate books for that period of time.

I do try to get students to connect the learning we are doing in reading workshop to the categories they choose. For instance, when we studied poetry one year, a category was "Poem with the Best Alliteration." When doing an in-depth character study, a book award category was "Character Who Changes the Most in a Book." When studying the mystery genre, students voted on a "Mystery With the Most Surprising Ending" category.

The more specific the category, the more students really put effort into reading and nominating books that truly fit the bill!

Learn more about our Class Book Awards here.

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