Booktalking is one of my favorite parts of my job as a school librarian. In fact, it just might be my very favorite part. After 17 years on the job, I feel I’ve gotten pretty good at it. I employ a variety of formats and styles, mixing it up so students stay interested. More often than not a group of students sprints to be the first to read the books I have just talked about. It’s a great feeling–one that I’m sure many of you reading this have experienced firsthand.
But my booktalks tend to be on the longish side.
So today, while booktalking historical fiction titles to sixth graders, I tried this.
I showed them copies of these three books:
I told the students that dogs have been an important part of military operations throughout history–alerting soldiers, sniffing for bombs, and more.
I told them that all three books take place during wartime–two during the Vietnam War and one during WWII.
I told them that Letters from Wolfie and Duke are about boys whose dogs become trained as military dogs and that Cracker is about a dog already in Vietnam who is getting a new soldier partner.
I said that dog lovers would probably be interested in these books, but that at least one of them is very sad.
And that was it.
And they ran to get them (and some others books I described less briefly).
I really enjoyed grouping the books together like that and keeping things short and sweet. So I will look for more opportunities to do that in the future.
Just goes to show you that there are always new booktalking tricks for this old dog to learn 🙂