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Boys and Books


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The following is from a class that a colleague and I taught pertaining to boys and literature.

The following is from a class that a colleague and I taught pertaining to boys and literature.

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  • 1. Boys and Books Bringing the two together October, 2007 Christian Denise
  • 2. What are you reading?
    • Circle only three starred references in each category.
    • If you check “other”, please tell what reading material you are think of.
    • Add other type of reading material if you think of them and they are not on the list.
  • 3. Survey Results
    • What did you learn about yourself or your own reading selections?
    • How can you relate this to how or what you teach in the classroom?
    • How does this impact the boys in your classroom?
  • 4. True or False?
    • Boys around the world read more for information and less for enjoyment then girls.
    • Girls tend to comprehend narrative text and many expository texts better than boys because they are more verbal.
  • 5. True or False?
    • Boys increasingly consider themselves to be “nonreaders” as they get older; very few designate themselves as such early in their schooling, but nearly 50% make that designation in high school.
  • 6. True or False?
    • Boys like to collect things and so get more interested in collecting series books also give them a “known quantity”…once they’ve finished one book in the series, they are familiar with the next books and feel confident about reading them.
  • 7. True or False?
    • Boys require more teacher time in coed settings.
    • Boys are slower to develop fine motor skills needed in writing and other literacy skills.
  • 8. True or False?
    • Boys are twice as likely to have a learning disability than girls and receive Ritalin 4-8 more times than girls.
    • Boys are less likely to go to college and less likely to graduate; 133 women get college degrees for every 100 men that graduate.
  • 9. True or False?
    • The male brain is better at storing single-sentence information (even trivia) than the female brain. The male brain holds a visual advantage in working with lists.
  • 10. Research Says…
    • Boys value reading as an activity less than girls do; boys of an average age of 14 listed their top obstacles to reading:
    • Boring/no fun 39%
    • No time/too busy 29.8%
    • Like other activities better 11.1%
    • Can’t get into the stories 7.7%
    • I’m not good at it 4.3%
    • Source: YA Library Services Association in 2001
  • 11. Girls….
    • prefer character driven stories and can be more verbal.
    • are more inductive in their reasoning.
    • prefer stories that revolve around relationships.
    • have more flexibility in their thinking.
    • depend more on visuals and words.
  • 12. Boys…
    • prefer stories about things they might be “doing.”
    • are more deductive in their reasoning.
    • prefer the genres of nonfiction, graphic novels, escapism and humor.
    • tend to be more concrete in their thinking, reading and friendships.
    • depend more on visuals for learning new things.
  • 13. Once Upon a Motorcycle Dude
    • The following read-aloud is an excellent example of the differences between male and female students and their thinking process and preferences.
  • 14. What Boys Like
    • Fast plot, “clear-cut” characters, a well-defined problem and a satisfying conclusions
    • A “Quick Hook”
    • Conflict
    • Quick Resolutions
    • Characters they can relate to
    • Things that are visually appealing
  • 15. What Boys Like
    • Text that is EASY to visualize.
    • Combination of pictures and words to tell a story.
    • Edgy subject matter.
    • Text that is similar to other texts they have read. (series)
    • Puns, word games and everyday language.
  • 16. Boys and Nonfiction
    • Research shows boys are drawn towards nonfiction text.
    • However, providing quality nonfiction text is key.
    • “ Ten Tests for Nonfiction” adapted from Eyeopeners: How to Choose and Use Children’s Books about Real People, Places and Things by Beverly Korbin, Penguin, 1988, pages 59-64
  • 17. Website Resources
  • 18. Comics and Graphic Novels
    • Comics: a story told with words and pictures, usually part of a series.
    • Graphic Novels: a story told in comics format and packaged like a novel, generally standing alone and not needing a series of support.
  • 19. Comics and Graphic Novels Benefit…
    • Students who have trouble visualizing as they read.
    • Reluctant or unmotivated readers.
    • Visually dependent readers.
  • 20. Why do readers like comics and graphic novels?
    • Humor
    • Everyday language tempered with puns, word games, etc.
    • Characters they can relate to
    • Reading for FUN, not “studying”
    • Visually appealing
    • Kids OWN comics, with little validation from educators
  • 21. Questions and Browsing
  • 22. Questions and Browsing