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Alternative Methods of Writing Reports: Fun Book Topic Ideas for Your Students
Alternative Methods of Writing Reports: Fun Book Topic Ideas for Your Students

Unfortunately, book reports can be quite boring and students often dread doing this assignment. When students are told that they have to write book reports, they imagine detailing the events of the book while closely examining its various themes. By giving your students a variety of alternative methods to present their books, they not only have a fun activity to engage their creativity and critical thinking, but they are also able to retain the important information much easier. Writing bland reports about books isn't always a good way to get students involved with literature, and with the following book topic ideas, you can present literature in much new light.

Television Talk Show

Unfortunately, there aren't too many literature programs that discuss various books on television. However, making your own television program in the form of a talk show is a fun and creative way to get students talking about certain themes and topics about the book they were supposed to read. In the formal programs, there is usually a mediator who opens the floor for discussion, and then guests present their opinions of the book while discussing character, plot, and setting. There are several ways to go about creating your own shows in your classroom. An easy method is to organize three of four students in a group and give them a worksheet of the questions that are going to be asked by the mediator during the show. Then, you can have students either present the books in front of the class or you can use cameras so that they can create their own program at home. This activity allows students to use their creativity while having fun talking about the book.

The Narrator

You have probably heard the deep and interesting voice of a narrator over a film preview, or during a movie or television program, a narrator is often used as a story technique. These narrators are often telling the story in reflection, and therefore they know all of the future details as the story unfolds. A fun way to get your students involved with their book report is to have them narrate the events of a story. This can be seen as a monologue or a storytelling event, and therefore a student can get carried away simply talking about everything that happened in the book. Set a time frame so that the student is forced to tell the events of the story in a concise, paraphrased manner. Additionally, have your students use foreshadowing as if they are telling the story in reflection. It might be helpful to watch scenes from movies or film previews that used a narrator in order to get students to think about how they can differentiate between storytelling and narrating.

Putting the Antagonist on Trial

In virtually every good novel, there is an antagonist who is dueling with the protagonist. In some cases, this antagonist isn't very easy to distinguish, as it could be the main character's adverse emotions, weather, dinosaurs, or even just a social stigma of the time. Nonetheless, there is always an antagonist present, and you can turn their evil doings into a fun class activity where this person or thing is put on trial. Set up a whole class day for this activity, and you can involve everyone in the class to question witnesses, question the antagonist, determine whether this person was guilty or not, and many other things. Before the activity, present your students with various roles, including other characters from the book, lawyers, and even jury members. Not only is this activity a great way of breaking the monotony of book reports, it always gives the whole class a detailed discussion about motives, plot events, and everything else related to the book.

News Reports

Every book always has a scene that is particularly important for all of the characters involved, and if you have found this scene fascinating, others might find them fascinating as well. This concept is similar to news reports, as reporters in real life situations describe interesting occurrences to other people who might enjoy hearing about these happenings as well. Therefore, a fun way to present major scenes in a book is to have your students report these events much like a news reporter. Similar to the television talk show activity, giving your students cameras can get them very involved with the activity. Encourage your students to make sets and use props. If your whole class read one book, then you can assign different scenes of the book to different groups of students so that the entire story is presented via your team of reporters.

Writing from the Perspective of a Character

Using drama to describe scenes from a book is an activity that isn't for every student, as teachers often have students who are shy or prefer not to perform in front of their classmates. Therefore, written book reports can be a valuable assignment for students who enjoy using their creativity on paper. However, instead of the typical book report, you can pay to do my homework even more enjoyable by having students write from the perspective of one of the characters. If the book is written in the first person, make sure that students choose other characters from the book so that different perspectives are presented. This activity can be very humorous as well, as students are able to use events, themes, and topics of the book and then completely create the character's frame of mind.

With all of the technology surrounding students' lives, it can be fairly difficult to get them to read more often. However, by integrating technology, modern concepts, and other things that are interesting to students, you can help them explore books in a whole new light. Whether you choose to utilize video cameras or mock trials in your class, you can help students really learn about the concepts and themes of literature in a format that they can remember. With a variety of alternative book topic ideas at your disposal, English class might become your students' favorite subject.

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