On reading with other people

parent's guideI recently had a chance to be part of a SENG parents group in my area. We read A Parent’s Guide to Gifted Children and discussed one chapter per week.

Initially, I signed up because I thought it might be helpful to meet other parents who might be having similar issues to what we’re dealing with (and it was).  I’ve read a lot of books on giftedness (check this, this, and this for lists), so I figured the book part would be stuff I already knew.

As it turned out, A Parent’s Guide to Gifted Children was one of the most helpful books on the topic that I’ve read. Primarily, I’d link that to the fact that it covers so many parenting issues (versus a heavy classroom management focus) but I also think I got so much more out of it because I was discussing each chapter with a group.

In the book clubs I’ve been part of, we’ve always discussed one book per month. That’s great for overall themes and usually seems like a good approach, especially for fiction, but I found that meeting more frequently and discussing individual chapters was a fantastic way to read a non-fiction book. It gave us time to dig deeply into each topic, share strategies, and talk through issues in a way that would not have been possible had we attempted to discuss the entire book in one fell swoop.

This got me started thinking about how or if I could do more book discussions this way.  Of course, living in the suburbs as I do, the immediate objection will be that no one has the time to meet once a week to discuss a book (sigh), but maybe I should ask around anyway.

Back to the book for a second: If you have gifted kids, I’d highly recommend A Parent’s Guide to Gifted Children, whether you read it alone or in a group.

Have you ever done a book discussion chapter-by-chapter?


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One thought on “On reading with other people

  1. That sounds like a worthwhile book. I look forward to checking into it. I was a gifted education teacher for awhile before moving to teach English at the high school level. While the change was wonderful in many ways, whenever I had a stack of essays or short stories to grade I’d long for those days with my “gifted” students. I’ve now been home educating for years, and have been thankful for this varied background. Tonight I head to my own book club which is mainly centered around fiction, so we’ll discuss a whole book. For many years I also had mother/daughter book clubs with my girls. Again, we read fiction and discussed the entire book each month. In a lighthearted movement purely for fun, my younger two daughters and I have read the Mother/Daughter Book Club series together. One of the aspects I appreciate about those books is how they often delve into a book deeply for the entire year. Makes me want that kind of opportunity to go chapter by chapter with a book the way you mention here, even if I wouldn’t want it to take quite so long. I see where non-fiction lends itself best, though it would be enjoyable with great literature as well. (Appreciate your blog so much, even when I don’t take the time to comment. Thank you.)
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