I just finished reading Readicide by Kelly Gallagher, and it rocked my world! It is up there with Teach Like Your Hair's On Fire by Rafe Esquith and The Book Whisperer by Donalyn Miller, two of my favorite "teaching books". Gallagher eloquently and convincingly argues that all of the focus on testing is killing off our readers' motivation to read. He cites numerous research studies and other renowned educators that back up his assertion. Although he is a self-proclaimed pot-stirrer, he's not willing to sit back and watch our nation's education system go down in flames. He gives applicable and realistic ways for teachers to help fix the Readicide epidemic. Although it may not sound like an easy read, it really was a page-turner that I finished in a few days. Reading this book has inspired me to change some of the practices in my classroom and to feel more confident about some of the practices I have always believed to be fruitful.
I've been meaning to read the book for while, after seeing him two years ago at a conference. I was motivated o pick up the book again because Gallagher is coming to the Galleria tomorrow to speak to teachers on the subject of writing. I'm looking forward to hearing him, and I am thankful for his inspiring book! If you haven't read Readicide, you need to!
"Let's not forget in the shadow of all this testing that our primary goal is to help our students become lifelong readers."--Kelly Gallagher