I am reading two professional books right now. Both are excellent and compliment each other. Both I am reading in conjunction with a Face Book private online book study. I am glad that I am able to post out what I think of each chapter, as it occurs to me. This helps me connect with the book and with my colleagues. I also get to hear and see their thoughts. Many share their work in the classroom with me by snapping quick photos or by sharing a reading victory.
I think that it is easy to do this when the book are high quality and high interest. The two books that I am reading are Reading in the Wild by Donalyn Miller and When Kids Can't Read by Kylene Beers. Donalyn Miller's Reading in the Wild offers many strategies to develop yourself as a wild or avid reader, as well as tips on how to promote wild reading in the classroom. Kylene Beers offers great ideas of how to help our dependent readers by giving the teachers and students tools to be come independent readers. The many chapters focus on specific strategies that you could use the next day in the classroom from frontloading anticipatory sets, to teaching comprehension before, during and after reading, to word study and fluency. There is so much more. I haven't even scratched the surface.
These books are full of classroom research. You can trust them because they are born from classroom research and the authors are very honest about their work. When I read through their accounts, I feel as if they are these teachers that I eat lunch with or plan with daily. They are down to earth and have lots to share with me.
I will post later what I am getting out of each book. You just might want to give them a try. My next reads will be The Book Whisperer (which I had started last year) and Kylene's new one Notice and Note about closer reading. They must be great reads too!