Book Passes Lead to Reading

On the second day of every school year I utilize a book pass to expose my students to a wide variety of books. It’s one of my favorite days of the school year because there’s a mix of excitement and uncertainty, but it always leads to reading. This year, after facilitating this session about creating a community of readers in the high school classroom, five other teachers in my building facilitated book passes this week!

This year I have my desks in groups of six since I have 35 desks in my classroom; it’s the easiest way to make them all fit and still feel like we have room to move around. So I had my students stay in their groups and pass the books within their groups. I gathered a wide range of genres, authors, and past class favorites for my students to choose from. Each student chose a book, wrote down the title and author, and then began reading for three minutes. I kept time on my phone and when it ended they wrote down Yes, No, or Maybe in regards to whether that book is of interest to them. Then they passed their book to the right and on the cycle went. Once or twice between passes I asked if anyone found a “Yes” book and allowed them to share that title and why they want to read it. We cycled through about seven books during each class this week.

Before the end of class I stop the book pass so students can put the books away, and more importantly, check out any book(s) they discovered and want to read. A few of my senior classes this year seemed a little apprehensive about checking out any books they found, but most of my classes had long lines of students waiting to check out their books. As I looked at the pages of books checked out, I decided it would be fun to write a post including which books my students chose to kick off their reading year.


  1. Great idea I love it!

  2. Great Idea. I love it.

  3. Your students chose absolutely awesome books, here’s to a school year of students LOVING reading!!!

  4. Love it. I’ve been doing book passes with my middle schoolers–reading them an excerpt or a picture book in a particular genre, then introducing and passing around a bunch of books in the same genre. I haven’t had them reading excerpts; I really like that idea. They are still learning how to preview a book, and want to take the easy way out and just look at the cover, so this would get them to read a bit without making it feel overwhelming.

  5. Susan Steffel says:

    You knew I’d love this one. Great job, Sarah!


  1. […] things about Run. I’m buying a physical copy immediately because I want it available for my beginning of the school year book pass. I can’t wait to get this book in my students’ […]

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