In 2nd grade, my son started enjoying reading but still struggled to find books he could read that captured his imagination. In 3rd, things got better but the books he wanted to read were still a bit beyond his comfort zone reading level. Now, he’s in 4th grade and BOOM! Part of it is his reading skills have matched up with his reading interests now. Part of it is the Independent Reading Program we are doing at school. We get kids to read books at the comfort reading zone and we ask them to respond after they read. A one to two sentence response. “I noticed that the character is . . . ” “I liked the way the author did . . . ” or “This part of the story made me think about when . . . ” It’s not easy but it’s working well for Gage. It’s also working well for many of my students. I wonder how many parents are seeing this kind of portrait of their 9 year old sons and daughters this year because of a simple program that we are implementing in our school . . .