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Start a Family Book Club!

Updated: Jun 7

During a recent tour, we had a conversation with a fourth-grade Learner who had transferred to GAP School the previous autumn. When I inquired about what he enjoyed the most about GAP, he responded, "we get to read so much!" This sentiment rings true as reading is highly valued at GAP School, and we ensure that our Learners have the opportunity to engage in pleasurable reading every day. Our goal is for our Learners to develop a passion for reading, recognizing that this process may require time and dedication. We expose them to a diverse range of books, introduce them to new titles that align with their interests, and delve into books together.

Want to continue fostering a love of reading this summer? Starting a family book club might be the perfect solution! Here’s how you can embark on this literary adventure and make it a memorable experience for everyone.

1. Choose a Family-Friendly Theme: Select a theme that excites every family member. Whether it’s fantasy adventures, historical tales, or stories set in nature, picking a theme helps create a cohesive reading list that everyone will enjoy.

2. Involve Everyone in Book Selection: Gather the family and let each member suggest books they’re interested in. This collaborative approach ensures that everyone feels included and excited about the selections. Rotate book choices to give everyone a chance to lead the discussion. Or have everyone pick their own book(s) based on the theme.

3. Create a Cozy Reading Nook: Designate a special spot in your home for reading. Fill it with comfy chairs, blankets, and good lighting. A cozy environment can make reading time more enjoyable and create a sense of anticipation for book club meetings. Schedule time to read each day, Learners seeing adults read is an important part of their journey to becoming a life long reader.

4. Set a Regular Meeting Schedule: Consistency is key. Decide on a regular meeting time that works for everyone, whether it’s weekly or bi-weekly. Having a set schedule helps build anticipation and keeps the momentum going.

5. Plan Engaging Activities: Make your book club meetings interactive by incorporating activities related to the book or theme. Create crafts, cook themed meals, or act out favorite scenes. These activities make the story come alive and deepen everyone’s connection to the book.

6. Encourage Open Discussions: Foster a supportive environment where everyone feels comfortable sharing their thoughts and opinions. Ask open-ended questions and encourage each family member to express what they liked, didn’t like, and what they learned from the book.

7. Keep a Family Book Journal: Document your book club journey in a family journal. Record the books you’ve read, your favorite quotes, and memorable discussions. This keepsake will be a wonderful reminder of the shared experiences and growth. Print out pictures of your meetings to tape into the book.

8. Invite Guests: Occasionally invite extended family members or friends to join your book club meetings. This can add new perspectives to your discussions and make the experience even more enriching.

9. Celebrate Milestones: Celebrate completing each book with a special treat or outing. Whether it’s a movie night, a picnic, or a themed party, these celebrations create lasting memories and give everyone something to look forward to.

10. Embrace Flexibility: Remember, the goal is to enjoy reading and spending time together. If a book isn’t resonating with the family, it's always okay to switch it up. Be flexible and open to making changes that enhance the experience. Remember books can be enjoyed in different ways, sometimes an audiobook is the best option for your family.

Book Suggestions to Get Started:

  • "Charlotte's Web" by E.B. White: A heartwarming story about friendship and life on a farm.

  • "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" by J.K. Rowling: A magical adventure that captivates readers of all ages.

  • "The Secret Garden" by Frances Hodgson Burnett: A tale of discovery, growth, and the healing power of nature.

  • "Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief" by Rick Riordan: A modern twist on Greek mythology with plenty of action and humor.

  • "Wonder" by R.J. Palacio: An inspiring story about kindness, acceptance, and the power of being yourself.

Starting a family book club is more than just reading books together; it’s about creating a shared experience that fosters learning, creativity, and family bonding. So gather your loved ones, pick up a book, and let the adventures begin! Happy reading!

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