Speed Dating by Book Genre: Personal Ads

I've blogged about Speed Dating With Books before - but I really fell in LOVE with this activity - it was a new take on it!

I don't let just anyone guest blog here - they have to be someone I know, admire, & like! (So stop asking me start-ups & companies!)  But Mary Reilley-Clark aka @SEMSLibraryLady is indeed a personal friend of mine, and her latest activity was something that I wanted join in on and to share with you! I'm going to post the graphics I created, with her text, and at the very end of this post you will find links to Make a Copy and take the Google Docs, an Exit Ticket, and the Kahoot game, too!

Stay tuned, my friends - this is going to be fun!

From Mary's original Scoopit share:

"We're speed dating this week. Several 6th grade teachers want their students to explore different fiction genres. I decided to make some personal ads (larger picture & at the end of the post) for different genres or subgenres. I already had resources lists in Destiny for these genres, so it made it easy. We have eleven tables, which we'll load with books and an ad. Students will have to rotate through at least 4 tables. They'll be discussing genres in class, but I made an exit ticket so I can track which are the most popular (I still have one more book order to place.)"

I’m an adrenaline junkie. I like non-stop action, whether it’s with swashbuckling pirates or spies and jewel thieves. Choose me if you like plot twists and lots of cliff hangers.

I’ll leave you guessing until my last few pages. If you like to be puzzled and often left in the dark, pick me up and try to figure me out.

Realistic  Fiction
You tell it like it is. Reality is just fine with you --no need for hocus pocus or playing games. Choose me if you want to hang out with kids kind of like you!

Books That Make You Cry
Grab a box of tissues if you pick me.
I’ll melt your heart in a good way.

I’m the one for you, if you’re into scary or disturbing visions of the future. Clones, microchips, hostile governments, survival...you enjoy reading about societies like this, if only to make your own life look more cozy! 

Harry Potter Read-Alikes
Let’s make some magic together! We both love wizards, and wish we went to Hogwarts. Mix us up a potion and get lost in my pages. 

Playing games is my thing! I don’t mean I’ll mess with your head, though. If you’re into a sport, check me out to find your favorite. 

We know unicorns and dragons are real, even if the rest of the world has lost hope. Let’s get together and make our own magic!

Historical Fiction
Do you ever feel like you were born in the wrong era? 
Pick me and let’s go back in time together...

Military Stories
Do you like long walks on the beach, baskets of kittens and meaningful chats over mugs of hot chocolate? Then go look somewhere else! I’ll shape you up with stories of war, soldiers, resistance fighters, with a mix of Fiction and Non-Fiction. 

Global Fiction
You know there’s a a lot more to the world than our little corner of paradise. Pick me, and let’s explore the world together. Warning: some parts of the world aren’t so pretty, but I know you’re ready for a different perspective.

Science Fiction
I believe the truth is out there and that there’s more to the universe than meets the eye. Aliens, life on other planets, alternative realities, and time travel? Let’s go on a voyage of the imagination together!


Here's the Flickr Gallery of Graphics - ALL CREATIVE COMMONS
Here's the Exit Ticket! Go to File > Make a Copy > 
Here's the Google Doc! - Take This! Go to File > Make a Copy > Make sure to see the fonts at the end of the doc and add them on Google to get the full effect!

Here's my Speed Dating with Books blog post! 

Example from Mary of the Personal Ads printed out and on the table
 - See other sizes

More About Mary: 

"I run a middle school library but I'M NOT A LIBRARIAN!  Sure,  I'd love to work with a teacher librarian, media specialist or whatever a credentialed person is called in your neck of the woods.  The reality is, I don't see that happening in my district.  I don't even know when elementary or middle schools in my district had librarians.  What we do have are some hard-working people, working full-time (and then some!) to give students the best library experience we can.    

I've wanted to be a librarian since I was 5, but that job option wasn't encouraged by the feisty and feminist nuns who taught me in  high school.  So I majored in International Environmental Studies, got another degree in Public Health,  and spent 9 years working in three wildly different bookstores to pay my way.  A short stint working for a governmental agency, a change of coasts, marriage, baby, and finally, volunteer hours in the school library.  When the library technician retired, I knew the job had to be mine.  Luckily the principal agreed.  I'm finishing my 14th year as a library media technician, and third in middle school.  That's 2520 days, and I've probably loved 2500 of them (I endure textbook collection, but there's nothing to love about it. But wait-- last year I had five student helpers and they were awesome kids I wouldn't have the pleasure of getting to know better if I wasn't collecting textbooks.  So I loved 2510 of them.)   

I was born to work in a library.  Everything about libraries makes intuitive sense to me.  I love the Dewey Decimal System! And shelving! And reading aloud! And book talking! I don't like silverfish. That's the only downside to libraries.  Why do silverfish like books so much? I also love that technology has made my job even more incredible. Every day I can share new things with teachers and students that I learned from blog posts, Twitter, webinars, and more!  If you're still reading, there are a few more things you should know.  I overuse words like awesome and amazing, as well as the exclamation point.  That's how I talk, too.  I just think a lot of library, book, and tech-related things are amazing, and a lot of the people involved in those things are awesome. I am old enough to be amazed that I can virtually hang out with library people from around the world.  

I share on Twitter & Scoopit about the great resources I've found, what goes on in my library, what I'd like to do in the future, and how I'm incorporating those shiny things I find that other library folks have so generously shared.   I'm a little snarky, and more than a bit subversive when it comes to the library, so anything I write here in no way reflects the policies of my school or district.  My frustrations with budget and technology limits may make it sound like I'm not happy with the powers that be, but I'm well aware they'd be happy to shower my library with books and  technology if they had the money!  I doubt the people who make those decisions will read this blog, but I like them, I really like them!"

From Gwyneth:
I admire and like Mary SO much and she's one of the most talented, generous, and dynamic Library Professionals in California and the country - I hope her fellow California Librarians, Library Associations, and professionals make her welcome and treat her with the respect she deserves. 
She Rocks! 
So do you!


  1. Would you or Mary be willing to share book lists for these genres? I'm good with quickly pulling titles for some, but for others I'm less skilled. Great activity!

    1. Hi Emily! Thanks for your comment! That's more a Mary question - why not Tweet her? She said she used Destiny to get her lists. I don't have Destiny nor book lists, I just go around and pull using my Genre stickers as a guide.

    2. Hi, Emily! Here's a link to our resource lists. I also head back to the shelves to replenish. We've done this activity with almost 300 students now, and the tables were looking a bit sparse! Thanks for your comment!

    3. Way past my bedtime--I think I left out the link! http://goo.gl/sZiFG3 That should get you there. If not, the link is in the Scoop.it post at the top of this post.

  2. These graphics are GORGEOUS! I've done single-genre book speed-dating before, but I love the idea of letting students pick their genres.

    1. Thanks, Diana! You do fabulous graphics, yourself - so a compliment like that is very appreciated! Thanks so much for your comment!
      Cheers, dear!

    2. Diana,with the size of my school, doing multiple genres is a necessity! We have about 800 6th graders, and most of the teachers opted to do this activity. Next year, I'll do it earlier, and do half the classes one month and the others the following month so the books can circulate more.

  3. Terrific post, Mary! A wonderful take on blind book dating. Of course I loved your graphic design, Gwyneth!!

  4. wow yeah yeah as quoted jullie your graphic designer are magnificent

  5. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Do You Know About Secret Bitmoji's?

Twitter Style Book Review Lesson

Don't Label Me: LGBTQIA+ Ally