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Would you like to get your kids and their friends together to read and discuss literature?
Would you believe us if we told you that starting a book club for kids is not only easy, but also A LOT OF FUN?
Our book club has been together for almost 5 years and our kids continue to tell us it is one of their favorite school activities. Over the years, as the kids have grown, we have made a few adjustments based on their interests and abilities, but the overall format of our book club for kids has remained basically the same over time.
To give you an idea of what has worked for us, here are the basic elements we have included on our homeschool book club for kids (we have created a FREE printable Checklist with this information, you can find it at the end of the post):
Type of Books
For the first couple of years we focused on classic literature. We live near Walt Disney World so we decided to have our children read original stories that inspired many of Disney’s movies and attractions such as Peter Pan, Alice in Wonderland, Pinocchio, and more.
This past year we chose to read Newbery Award winning books with our older children while the younger children read books related to seasons and holidays.
Our book club includes between 3-6 families.
Some years we have included all ages in the same group – when we read classic literature titles the older children would read the original works while less experienced readers read an abridged version. Other times we have conducted different book clubs for kids with different reading levels and/or interests.
Our book club typically meets at one of the participant’s homes or at a local park. We usually include a discussion and some type of activity (craft, food, etc.) therefore we need tables and chairs.
Field trips have also been a very important part of our book club. Whenever possible we look for opportunities to “bring out learning to life” by visiting a place, or meeting with a person, related to the story.
The frequency of our book club meeting has varied over the years, depending on everyone’s availability and the format of the group. One year we meet once a week, for several years we met twice a month, and this year we are meeting just once a month. Each of these arrangements has worked well for us so we really can’t say that one format is better than another.
Expectations Between Meetings
At the beginning of our school year we determine a list of books and our meeting schedule.
Each family is responsible for completing the book and any required work between meetings. For example:
- Each family decides how the book will be read (family read aloud, children read aloud or to self, listen to the book on tape, etc.)
- The World for Learning World Study Guides we offer were originally created for use with our own book club. Families complete the lapbook components for the book study, time line, author study, etc. at home at their own pace.
- We require a writing assignment for each meeting. Children must complete the writing assignment, be prepared to share writing with the group, and participate in the group discussion at our meetings. We use this as an opportunity for our children to practice public speaking.
Leading the Book Club Meetings
We include both discussions and hands-on activities during each book club meeting.
Parents take turns preparing and leading a literary analysis discussion with the kids. Students are also encouraged to share interesting information learned during their home studies.
To help you begin, download our FREE “Starting a Book Club for Kids” checklist:
Regardless of how your book club for kids is structured, be sure to keep it fun! Build knowledge and skills, but also create memories and expose your children to timeless lessons that classic literature can uniquely offer.
If you have questions about our book club format, please send us an email or post a comment below.
We would love to hear from you!
Be sure to check out our World Study Guides to make your Book Club planning EASY! Each Guide contains lapbook pieces, hands-on activities, recipes and more…
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