Homework Doesn’t Have To Suck: Choose Your Own (School Reading Assignment) Adventure…1

You walk into Language Arts class and see the assignment on the board: “Read a book by an author from Latin America…”

If you smile happily to yourself because you know exactly what you’re going to read, go read a different Push To Talk blog post!

If you gnash your teeth/bite your nails/pull at your hair in frustration because you have no idea where to begin looking for a book by a Latin American author, keep reading.

You remember that a librarian once said something about using some resource you can get to through The Seattle Public Library’s website to find different kinds of books…

If you remember which resource it was and how to get to it, go read a completely different blog!

If you can’t remember anything more than the librarian writing the information on a piece of paper that you promptly used as a wrapper for your used gum, keep reading.

You head to The Seattle Public Library’s website (www.spl.org) and notice a link for Teens, so you click on it, then click on a link for Online Resources

If you’re on such a roll you know exactly what to do now, go start your own blog!

If you think all the links under “Books and Reading” look good and aren’t sure which one to click on, keep reading.

The librarian’s voice suddenly pops into your head, saying, “Try Novelist Plus,” which is a little freaky, but you click on the link anyway. You’re asked to enter your library card number and PIN, but fortunately you have those memorized because you are awesome. You’re so close to your goal, but it seems there’s one more step…

If you take that step, congratulations! You survived the school reading assignment adventure!

If you try saying “Open Sesame,” blasting away with a ray gun, or feeling around for the loose brick that conceals the secret lever, you’ve wandered into the wrong adventure and should keep reading.

You click on Advanced Search and discover a treasure trove of options. You can choose Teens or Adults for Audience. You can choose Fiction or Nonfiction. You can choose the Author’s Nationality or Cultural Identity. And so much more. You make your choices and get a list of books that meet your teacher’s criteria. You decide one looks good and click to see if a copy is available at The Seattle Public Library. It is! You made it!

Although now there’s a horde of zombies shuffling towards you. On to the next adventure…

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