Living Outside the Lines is spreading her wings. A book will come out this year that will show you how to create and enjoy the classics by reading them as a group, sharing a meal, discussing the books and creating project presentations with your friends and children.
The club began in Tyler, Texas in 2002. Lee Desmond was one of the founding mothers. She and her daughter Erin read with us for two years before our daughters graduated from high school. When her daughter, Cassie turned seven, Lee was concerned that she didn’t seem to love reading. Cassie’s interests were in the great outdoors. Lee and Cassie joined the club for kids under high school age and low and behold, Cassie became a lover of books.
In 2010, Lee’s family and mine moved away from Tyler. She moved to Colorado and I moved to San Antonio. She didn’t want to give up the literature club experience, so she and Cassie started a Living Outside the Lines club in Denver. It’s a huge hit! Literature Club is more than an event, it’s an experience. (Click to Tweet)
Lee told this story to me the other day.
When we started literature club this year, Kori was a little hesitant because Stephen, her eighth grader, wasn’t too interested in reading. She decided to join so that she and Stephen, her oldest of 5 boys, could have a regular mom/son time out. About 3 months in to literature club, Kori called to thank me and to say that Stephen was loving our books. He had just started Shakespeare and wanted more!
At our meeting this month, the activity for the students was to write a fictional travel journal, forming characters, events, and places. We read Pilgrim’s Progress, and next month we’re reading Canterbury Tales; their activity next month is to take the same idea and develop the journal further, writing about what they’re learning from the travels and characters. Stephen’s journal this month was very funny; his characters were based on each of his brothers and some of his friends from our group. And he gave each a characteristic based on how he knows them. We all had a lot of laughs, and some of the kids want to put his story in video form!
The evening of our last lit club meeting, Stephen’s mom also told us that he had the option to go to dinner with his dad to celebrate his dad’s birthday or go to literature club — he chose literature! 🙂
The Denver story isn’t unique. Wherever literature clubs are formed, this is the result. You can learn how to start your literature club with The LITClub, Transforming Reading into an Experience. Everything you need to start a literature club. (Click to Tweet)
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What do you think about the literature club idea?