Tip for Sparking Conversation on Reading: Table Topic Cards

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to spark conversation in your classroom around books, I love using Table Topics Cubes: Book Club Edition.  These people seriously should start paying me for all the times I’ve recommended them or given them as teacher gifts.

Whether it’s choice reading or a shared class novels, these cards work wonders for igniting informal book chats.  You can make either a slight investment of either your time—in creating question cards on your own—or with your school funds—however insufficient they might be to purchase the cards yourself.


Sometimes I have my students pick up a couple cards as they’re transitioning out of silent reading.  From there, we slide in to an informal book chat  with our small groups or writing prompt discussing our individual choice reading books.


If we’re sharing a whole class novel at that time, I have the students pick up a couple cards to use as “back up” during our whole-class/small-group discussions.  I always ask that the students come prepared with questions from the reading; however, we keep these back-ups as an arsenal in case someone else already asked our question and we need to keep the convo moving.

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