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National Reading Month

Happy National Reading Month!

Written by Elizabeth Burck, IGES

As science educators, National Reading Month is cause for celebration--for it is the development and nurturing of strong reading skills that builds students’ scientific knowledge. Further proof of the connection between reading and scientific knowledge lies in the inclusion of ELA/Literacy Standards in the Next Generation Science Standards.

National Reading Month presents the perfect opportunity for learners to explore NASA reading material on a more personal level. The resources highlighted in the NASA Wavelength lists shown below are grade-appropriate reading opportunities that feature engaging educational science stories, articles and online magazines.

Engaging learners in reading supplemental science materials involves targeting their interests. Do you have students who seek reading materials that are rich in drama, full of nonstop action, or showcase an adventure? Do others beg for a good mystery or love a travelogue featuring an exotic location? How about those who can’t get enough history? NASA has all of these genres covered! Discover the dramatic environmental effects associated with “Urban Heat Islands.” “EO Kids: Landslides” reveals the consequences of geologic action. Join in the adventure of making “Discoveries at Willow Creek.” Investigate the “Mystery of the Missing Hummingbirds.” Travel to Pluto with the New Horizons mission in “Space Place: Hail King of the Ice Dwarfs.” Read front page stories from the “Cosmic Times” declaring discoveries about the universe that made headlines as far back as 1919, or go back to 1958 to the launch of Explorer I in “60 Years of Looking at Earth from Above.”

Through the articles and stories highlighted above as well as others included on the three lists, learners will use several literacy skills including understanding from evidence, synthesizing complex information, following detailed accounts of events and concepts, and analyzing information presented in diagrams and data. To engage students in the scientific aspects of the readings, have them respond to the article by asking questions, defining the related problems, designing solutions to those problems, constructing explanations, engaging in arguments from evidence, and by picking out examples of patterns, causes and effects, and stability and change.

These resources, chosen for their focus on reading, are compiled into three separate lists based on grade level: K-5, Middle School and High School. Each list can be easily accessed from the following links:

National Reading Month: K-5 Resources
National Reading Month: Middle School Resources
National Reading Month: High School Resources

To make a copy and personalize any of the lists, be sure to first “Log In” or “Register” using the link on the right side of the blue bar found at the top of the page. Then click on the link to any of the lists above and select “Copy list.”

Wavelength wishes you and your students a Happy National Reading Month!


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