A New Twist on Book Reports

Reading is one of life's most indispensable skills. In today's society, with the ever increasing assortment of new media, kids have an increasingly difficult time finding their way to books. With that in mind, the homework for Humanities in 7th grade is designed to encourage students to develop a love of reading. Seventh graders at Falmouth Academy are tasked with choosing books to read independently each night.

Some students enter Falmouth Academy as habitual readers, and already have an idea of what they might like to read, but many do not have this literary familiarity yet. And so it can be difficult for many students to choose books.  As such, one project in the early weeks of 7th grade Humanities was for students to make a commercial for one of the books they have read. It's a twist on the traditional book report that has the added value of pushing students to think critically about the best way to "sell" their book to their peers, and provides a preview of the books that their classmates are reading. It also gives our students the opportunity to act as amateur filmmakers, as they use Falmouth Academy's green screen to set their scenes from a virtually infinite array of places around the world. This year, the green screen allowed 7th graders to creates settings in their commercials ranging from the Canadian wilderness to India to Mars. The project was a fun and interesting way for students to help each other choose their next book.