Book Suitability

Supporting literacy involves allowing students opportunities to choose books according to their interests and passions. But while it is important to foster choice and not hinder students with rigid reading lists, students often require guidance in selecting books that are not beyond their reading grasp, but offer an achievable challenge to help the reader become a flexible problem solver. The power of the teacher-librarian is the ability to recommend the right book to the right child at the right time.

Literature Integration

  • The following is a list of books that pertain to matching books to primary readers:



  • Bookmatch is an acronym to help students self-select a suitable book. The acronym stands for the book length, number of words on a page, organization, and prior knowledge about the topic.


I Pick (The Daily Five)

  • I - I choose a book
  • P urpose - Why do I want to read it?
  • I interest - Does it interest me?
  • C omprehend - Am I understanding what I am reading?
  • K now -I know most of the words

Five-Finger Rule

  • The five finger rule asks a student to open a perspective book and read one page. The student puts a finger up for every word they do not know. If more than 5 fingers are raised on any given page, the book is too difficult to be read independently. If the child knows every word, the book is not a reading challenge. One to four unknown words on any given page puts the student in the zone of proximal development. This empowers the student to find the correct level book without looking to other sources.

Good Fit Book (The Daily Five)

  • goodfitbooks.jpg

Can It Be For Me?

  • By using these letters, a student can self-determine if their reading selection can be read independently.
  • Cover
  • Author
  • Number of pages
  • Illustrations
  • Title
  • Book blurb
  • Excerpt
  • First page
  • Opinion of others (awards, reviews)
  • Reverse (back of title page - LOC subj headings, summary)
  • My friends
  • Entirety
    The pdf describes the book selection criteria .


  • Read an excerpt, the back of the book summary, and/or the endpapers to determine if a resource is of interest.Speed Dating With Booksis a fun activity to highlight the benefits of skimming prior to selecting ).

Online Reading Survey

  • Brainpop offers a video and online quiz to help provide information about a student's reading selection. It is a subscription site, but a free trial is available.

Shelf Marker

Shelf Marker Hokey Pokey

  • You put your shelf marker in
  • You take the book out
  • You keep your shelf marker in
  • And you hold the book about
  • You do the hokey pokey
  • And you turn yourself around
  • That's what it's all about!
  • You put the book back in
  • You take the shelf marker out
  • You put your shelf marker in
  • See what another book's about
  • You do the hokey pokey
  • And you turn yourself around
  • That's what it's all about!
  • - Lisa Mills