“When we limit independent reading to a small range of topics, genres, and reading levels, and routinely assign rote accountability tasks like daily reading logs, we inadvertently send a signal that reading isn’t meant to be a joyful, inspiring, self-directed, and even revelatory activity.
” ‘Independent reading is not about a number of minutes or the level of the book. It is not a program,” write literacy experts and middle and high school teachers, Kylene Beers and Robert E. Probst in Literacy Today. “It is about creating independent thinkers who think with compassion, logic, and curiosity, and without manipulation from others. They think—and from those thoughts, they become more than they were. They become independent.’ “