Developing Reading and Writing Skills
Over the years we have noticed that the children attending our summer camp have significant reading deficiencies. In many instances our 7th and 8th grade campers are reading and writing at the 2nd or 3rd grade level. At the same time we have noticed that these children have great difficulty sharing their thinking about a text.
The idea of a book club emerged as a way to help these students engage in meaningful reading experiences throughout the year. In the first year (2014) we chose Tuck Para Siempre (Tuck Everlasting) by Natalie Babbitt as the text to be discussed. Tanya scoured the internet looking for gently used copies of the Spanish version because by early February over fifty students had pre-enrolled in the club. Tanya was then able to go down to the DR during February vacation to help launch the program. The club was lead by Maria Victoria Carreño, a Dominican born educator and writer who graduated from Queens College and has since returned to the DR to live. Since then the club has flourished.
In the following year we introduced the