Read any Book, Share any Book

How an unorthodox book club brought staff together into life long learning

Feb 23, 2019

My name is Riley Dueck and I love reading. Interestingly, I only found this love of reading within the last five years of my life, so recently I’ve been reading numerous books. Currently, if you checked my GoodReads, you’d find that I’m actively reading seven books, all at the same time.

In my reading, I’m learning new knowledge and listening to voices from all around the world. Whether the book is about education, philosophy, or fiction, I am reading it and I am learning from it.

My learning prompted me to engage others about their reading. One of my favourite questions to ask others is, “what are you reading right now?” In fact, I love the question so much, I’m extremely disappointed when others tell me they don’t really like reading.

In my ventures to hear what others are reading, a good friend of mine told me about a book club he leads. His book club is slightly unorthodox, as they do not mandate a book for everyone to read; rather, each person reads their own book and comes prepared to share what they have learned from it.

I was intrigued by this idea — so intrigued that I was prompted to start a book club of my own with my middle school colleagues. I figured that if anyone would be interested in learning more and reading more, it would be a group of teachers.

Lo and behold, our inaugural book club meeting took place. We brought our books and lunches and we started discussing our favourite genres and current reads. The meeting was a resounding success. The engagement was so high that we even ran out of time to talk about everyone’s books! We finally decided to meet every two weeks, rather than every month, because we wanted to pick up right where we ended in our previous meeting.

Tim Cavey, the creator of Teachers on Fire, was rather excited by all of this.

The sharing was enlightening and the results were inspiring. I would encourage any faculty who is interested in life-long learning or collaboration to begin a lunchtime book club at their school.

Keep reading. Keep sharing. Keep learning.