As the creator of the wonderful book lists for the 2014 back-to-school reading challenge, we have asked our very own Nancy Stetzinger, Director of to be a guest blogger! Ms. Stetzinger has an incredible history in the world of publishing! We look forward to future blog posts from her!
Have you heard about the myON Reading Road Trip Challenge? It’s a great way to learn about your state, other states, regions and the U.S. in general. It’s also a great way to engage your students in reading and getting them off to a great start to the school year!
And personally speaking, it was great fun (and maybe a bit painful) creating these lists. I was on every state webpage, every state reading list page, www.awesomeamerica.com, and www.statesymbolsusa.org. But I learned a lot. And as a graduate of let’s say a few years it was so much fun and educational too!
Do you know :
- How many states have the Honey Bees as their state insect?
- How many different types of turtles are state reptiles?
- Did you know that in Texas it is illegal to graffiti someone else’s cow?
- Or that Utah is the jello capital of the world?
- Did you know that Oklahoma is home to the shopping cart, the aerosol can and parking meters?
- Did you also know that Maine produces 99% of all blueberries in the country?
There are so many fun facts and some silly ones to discover, but I digress…
The Reading Road Trip Challenge lists contain books across all grades K-12. They are a mix of fiction and nonfiction. All fiction books have a reason for being there, they are set in the state, the author was from the state or they have appeared on the state reading list. Nonfiction books help tell the story of the state, what dinosaurs roamed the area? Where did early settlers hide their treasure? What famous ghosts inhabit the White House? What Native American tribes lived across the country? What famous people lived in the state? And let’s find out about sea turtles, box turtles and tortoises.
So as you set your students loose across the country don’t be afraid to branch out and incorporate reading and research. Ideas include:
- One book per state and one key event in the state’s history
- One book per state and one fun fact
- One book per state and one important person per state
- One book per state and an essay on If You Could Live Anywhere in the US
I could go on, but you get the idea…Take the Reading Road Trip Challenge and see the U.S.A.!