Imagine turning your classroom into a hip coffee shop or observing your students actively browsing through your classroom bookshelves to create poetry. This is exactly what we are talking about in this episode! Katie Saj from Mochas and Markbooks stops by for a fun interview about creative ideas she uses to engage her students in reading!
During our interview, Katie shared her amazing classroom transformation inspired by the cozy vibes of Tim Horton’s, the beloved Canadian coffee shop. She creatively turned her classroom into a unique coffee shop experience that entices students to immerse themselves in the world of books. By creating a warm and inviting atmosphere reminiscent of a coffee shop, students feel comfortable exploring new genres, selecting books for their personal reading pleasure, and above all, experiencing the sheer joy of reading without any pressure or judgment. Additionally, Katie introduced an engaging activity called Book Spine Poetry, where students arrange book spines to create poems. This activity not only allows students to connect with the class library but also encourages their creativity to soar and ignites their imaginations.
In this episode about reading engagement, Kaite shares with us:
- A book tasting is a room transformation activity where students sample books from different genres in a themed environment, such as a coffee shop or bakery.
- Book spine poetry involves arranging books’ spines to create a poem. Students participate in this activity by selecting books that align with the desired theme or message.
- First Chapter Friday is an activity where teachers read or play the first chapter of a book to engage students and encourage them to continue reading.
Get to Know Katie from Mochas and Markbooks
Katie teaches high school English at an Indigenous private school in Northern Ontario, Canada. In addition to her Honours Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Education, she has Alternative Education and Reading Specialist additional qualifications. She also runs a Teacher Instagram and is a TpT Teacher-Author. In addition to teaching, she has also worked as a School Literacy Lead, and has been contracted as an Educational Resource Creator, Educational Consultant, and Digital Creator. When she’s not in the classroom, Katie loves spending time with her husband and two sons, and enjoys going for coffee with friends.
Connect with Katie
Be sure to join the Secondary ELA Facebook group where we will be continuing the conversation about fun, engaging activities to entice teens to read!