Two Book Report Options
Creative book report ideas can add some spice to your classroom while still meeting course goals. They engage students with unique tasks that ask them to show their understanding of either classroom or individual reading. The following broad ideas can easily be customized to fit the needs of your students. Lengthen the requirements for an advanced class or provide forms and templates to students who need more guidance.
When students create a character scrapbook, they reflect on what they have learned about the main character of a novel, including his or her past, relationships, thoughts, motivations, and role in the story. They use this knowledge to assemble a scrapbook that the character might have created. Objects can include ticket stubs, photographs, letters, schoolwork and report cards, hobbies, and much more, depending widely on the character. Students can include pictures of objects or actually collect physical objects (in which case students may want to expand their thinking from a scrapbook to a personal treasure box for their characters).
In addition to selecting the items that their characters would collect in a scrapbook, it is important to ask the students to explain why the objects are important to the character and the events of the novel. Teachers may ask students to provide a written report or to present this information to the class in an oral report. This creative book report idea is ideal for individual novel projects.
A book soundtrack ask students to divide a book into sections or major scenes and then provide a song to accompany each segment, just as a movie soundtrack provides music to mirror the events of the film. Students then write an explanation for why each song fits a specific section of the book. Students can design a cover for the soundtrack to provide an additional opportunity to show their understanding of the book.
Students should select songs with lyrics that highlight the major plot points and themes of the book, with the exception of classical pieces that can be chosen to evoke the mood of a scene. Set guidelines about appropriate lyrics and necessary edits from the beginning of the project. Teachers can choose to ask students to provide printouts of the lyrics or to burn a CD with their selections, although asking for students to submit lyrics highlights the importance of selecting songs thoughtfully in terms of what they have to say about the novel.