Welcome, we are discussing the final chapter of Readicide by Kelly Gallagher

Chapter 5, Ending Readicide

Gallagher ends his book with some information on the number one schools in the world. In Finland children do not start school until they are 7. There are very few standardized test and very little homework.  But, I live in the United States and I have to teach in the system that we have here.

So what can I do? Let’s start with homework. The nice way to say it is: I have never been a fan. In fact I hate it. Yes, I just said that out loud. As a teacher, I think it is a waste of my time to correct something that many times the parents have done. As a parent, I find it very stressful to fit it into our busy evening.
I am forced to send homework home. So over the years, I have gotten into a rhythm that is a win, win as far as homework goes. I send home paragraph of the week on Monday. This gives the family plenty of flexibility as to when to finish the homework.

I have also worked on the reading log that every student is required to fill out and return each week. Instead of logging daily minutes I have the students answer 1 question a week about the book they are reading. This really works for me and the kiddos. I still have some parents who complain about the lack of homework, but I plan on suggesting that the non-believers read the book Readicide. I will even offer them my copy.

Gallagher wraps up his book by reviewing the 50/50 approach.

50% Recreational reading and 50% Academic reading. The one thing that leaps out at me with this approach is:

Teach less material and teach it deeply. This is my big challenge. While I know it will be difficult, I will be working towards this goal.

Thanks so much for joining us. I hope you have found some interesting take aways from our thoughts on a great book.

Hop on over to The Big Kids Hall and see what Lizzie has to say.


  1. I don't give out homework at all! I've had a lot of parents complain (usually the questionable life choices type, ironic huh?) Homework is like a babysitter for them like the television. Instead of homework, I give out monthly engaging projects and I hope that the kids are jazzed enough over their projects to do a lot of the work at home. Usually all the good students work their behinds off.. and all the poor students do not work at home- usually it's because they can't work at home due to crazy lifestyles. I'm just happy my principal supports what I do.

    Great Wrap Up!

    The Whimsical Teacher

  2. I despise homework as well. I like your paragraph of the week concept. I started switching mid-year to reading logs because I wanted to promote more independent reading. Unfortunately, these backfired because students were just filling in their minutes without actually reading. I tried to have them provide summaries as well, but writing, just like reading, was very difficult for them...and most just ended up copying a paragraph or two from inside the book. I am looking for a new and improved way to revamp my reading logs this year. I am open to suggestions!

    The Organized Plan Book

  3. I wish I didn't have to assign homework. I always mention that I would love to pilot a "No Homework" school year in my district. I are expected to assign homework. I do have to say that I assign a lot less then when I started teaching. For those non believers you should also suggest they read "The Homework Myth" by Alfie Kohn. It is very eye opening.

    Quinnessential Lessons