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Stop, Drop and Read Day

This can be as big as a whole school literacy event or as small as a single-class celebration of reading.

Grades K-8
Subjects Language Arts
Time Frame Any time period up to a full day
Materials Lots of reading materials

This can be a whole school literacy event. Some planning by a committee or the whole staff will make this special day run smoothly. It can run for any time period, depending on how you choose to organize it. Other possibilities are a single class, grade level or division celebration of reading. A solid structure will ensure a successful event. Make a schedule for the events so you can organize appropriate time frames for each type of reading.


  • Everyone reads from individual books quietly for one minute, mark starting and finishing points, count the words read in one minute, and come up with a total number of words for each individual and for the class as a whole (Math tie-in).
  • Everyone reads the same paragraph at the same time. Use a text that each student has, perhaps a page in a textbook or a photocopied page.
  • Using a text that each student has, have a student read one word, then go around the whole class with each student reading one word.
  • Lip reading: guess what the person is saying as they read without vocalizing.
  • Share a book with a friend or group.
  • Use atlases to look up place names. For example, find a place that has a girl's name, boy's name, name of a color, etc.
  • Teacher reads to students.
  • Choral reading: prepare a selection that you
    can present to another class (see page 36).
  • Bring in some newspapers to share.
  • Use a class set of dictionaries for "dictionary races" where students race to be the first to look up a word and read its meaning.
  • Everyone reads aloud (different things) at the same time for one minute. This is silly and loud, but fun.
  • Get a selection of picture books for students to read.
  • Sing the words being read to the tune of the ABC song.
  • Join up with a buddy class, so older students can read to younger ones, and younger ones can use a book to tell a story to older ones.
  • Invite special guest readers (parents, the mayor, the principal, etc.) to the school to read to students or perhaps to read and discuss their favorite childhood book.
  • Listen to an audio book (or part of one) together.
  • Have a collection of materials written in other languages and students can have fun trying to figure out how to pronounce the foreign words and their meanings
  • Organize your event so that students travel from one place to another for various types of reading. For example, one class could be designated for reading newspapers, one for magazines, one for atlas work, thus reducing the amount of materials each individual teacher must collect.
  • Schedule a school-wide pizza lunch, charge the students a dollar a slice and donate the profits to the school library or a local food bank. Parent volunteers could organize this.
  • Arrange an author visit as the highlight of the day.
  • Design a certificate or bookmark that can be given to students at the end of the day.

Book Tie-ins

Book! Book! Book! by Deborah Bruss

Printed with permission from Firefly Books Ltd.

Great Teacher Projects K-8 by Laura Mayne

Get The Book
Great Teacher Projects: K-8


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