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Battle of the Books is an annual event in the Middle School at AIS-R. A fun-filled kickoff assembly is held in January. Teams of teachers dress up in costumes related to the theme and 'battle' by answering questions about books. Excitement builds as the students cheer on their teachers and eagerly anticipate the announcement of the list of books for the current year's battle. The intent of Battle of the Books is to get our kids excited about reading, light a fire under reluctant readers, and promote reading as a rewarding pursuit. This is a volunteer program where students make the decision to read outside of what is assigned in class and in so doing, begin to acquire the habits of a lifelong reader.
All students will read as many of the chosen titles as possible -- over a period of three to four months. Questions for the battles will be written by students and based on literary elements like plot, setting, and characterization. Teams will be formed, battles staged, and play-off rounds held as we head toward the finals. Although there is a competitive element to BOB, we continually stress that reading isn't a competitive endeavor, but by adding this element, we hope to jump-start kids who have not yet found the reading habit. By working in teams and writing questions about the books, students begin to bond as a team, share the excitement of the books they are reading, and gain new knowledge -- not only of the books they are reading -- but of the authors of these books, and genres of books they might not have considered before.
Final battles are held in late May or early June and parents are invited. If you have a chance, please take a look at some of the books your kids are bringing home -- you might be surprised by the high quality of young adult literature these days!