Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Reading Interest Surveys

A conversation popped up on Twitter today and here is how it went:
This is the wonderful thing about Twitter, you can reach out across the miles and get quick answers from your professional learning network (#PLN).

Scene: A child walks into a library, stops, and stands staring blank eyed at all the shelves filled with fantastic books while lamenting "I can't find anything to read." Pan the camera to a librarian in the shadows of the stacks clutching a knife in her heart. That is what it feels like when you have spent countless hours diligently searching high and low curating the perfect library collection. Or perhaps this soulless lament is a battle cry to the champions of all readers (yes that champion is you-parents, teachers, and librarians). Your quest is to help this woeful child discover their inner self so they may learn the secrets of selecting books to match their reading interests. Sound the battle cry and fade to black.

What is a Reading Interest Survey?
Questionnaires known as Reading Interest, Reading Inventory, or Reading Attitude Surveys are helpful tools to help teachers, librarians, and parents gain a sense of a child's interests, favorite things, likes, dislikes, hobbies, and how they feel about reading. This data can serve as a guide to help a reader learn to identify the types of books they might be interested in reading. The goal is to help readers become successful in identifying the right books that will motivate them without frustrating them.
  Ms. Murphy's "Getting to Know You" Reader's Interview.
The link above takes you to my Reading Interest Surveys. The first is a set of interview questions designed so partners may take turns interviewing each other while also getting      acquainted with each other.

What is the next step?
After collecting the reader's interviews, I review each student's survey with them to get a bigger sense of what type of book will click with them. Sometimes I offer them a good book match and other times we have to keep looking for the perfect fit. I keep the interview data in a binder so that I can flip back quickly when a student gets stumped and he or she needs a refresher on their likes and dislikes. I think I will offer kiddos a chance to edit their responses mid-year as they develop and grow as readers.    

Follow Julee's board Reading Surveys & Reader's Responses on Pinterest.

Interest surveys available online:

 “Garfield” Reading Interest (Professor Garfield) Survey: http://www.professorgarfield.org/parents_teachers/printables/pdfs/reading/readingsurvey.pdf

Clear Rapids Community Schools Reading Interest Surveys:

General Interest Surveys that will help librarians guide readers: Elementary student friendly with use of visual aids:

My Way:

This is a nice survey It's easy to complete.
If I Ran the School:

Starring Me!

Enjoyment of Reading survey-very old, but still effective use of questions. I really like this one but would combine with a happy face or Garfield type visual image for rating:

I hope you will find these resources helpful. If you have a reader's interest survey you would like to share, please add it in the comments section. Share the knowledge and empower us all.


  1. This post is such a wonderful resource! I love using reader interest surveys, but I might adapt mine to include some of the information you provided. THANK YOU!

    1. Thank you Ricki. I find that students enjoy getting to know themselves and their classmates and reading interest surveys serve this purpose well.


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