Use Visual Aids in Your Classroom to Generate Excitement
Post visual aids in your classroom to get students interested and curious about the next novel or unit you'll be reading/studying. As you read, add to your display by posting pictures of words your students are unfamiliar with. Better yet, allow them to find pictures of the words they may be unfamiliar with and have them create a visual display while you are reading a novel or story. Using examples (and having them be a part of the selection of materials for display) helps generate excitement and interest for the material.
If the novel you are reading has fan sites, an official page, games related to it, or the author has a page, let your students explore those sites. Be careful about spoilers, however, as you don't want to give anything away before they've read it.
Great sites for The Hunger Games trilogy include:
http://www.scholastic.com/thehungergames/index.htm - Scholastic's Hunger Games page includes informative and interesting videos from Suzanne Collins, games, downloadable badges and pictures, and more.
http://www.suzannecollinsbooks.com/ - Suzanne Collins' official website with biography and many reviews of her popular books.
http://thehungergames.wikia.com/wiki/The_Hunger_Games_Wiki - The Hunger Games Wiki is packed with information (and spoilers) about the trilogy. Includes pictures, character bios, summaries, and more.
http://www.hungergamestrilogy.com/fansite/ - The Hunger Games Trilogy Fansite was one of the first fan sites for the novel. They have up-to-the-date information on the upcoming movie and feature extensive fan forums and even a fun Hunger Games badge maker.
http://mockingjay.net/ - Mockingjay.net is unique from other fan sites because they post podcasts (the Jabberjays) that can be easily shared with your students. In fact, allow students to listen to a few, then make their own.
http://www.hungergamestrilogy.net/ - The Hunger Games Trilogy.net is another fan site that offers up-to-date information in an eye-appealing layout. They have many giveaways, posted videos, music, art, and so much more.
http://mockingjay.co.uk/index.php - Props to UK's Mockingjay.co.uk website for launching their site last year loaded with tons of information in their online encyclopedia. You can also grab a movie release countdown from their site, as well.
I have links posted to the right with other great fan sites, as well. My Hunger Games CD contains many of the pictures displayed in my examples.
I took the photos of these visual aides from my classroom. Some I had framed and keep up year-round. I made the magnets using super-strong ceramic disc magnets (The Magnet Source is a great online dealer) and glued the image to the disc. Seal it with clear glaze so the image doesn't fade. They are wonderful for white boards and strong enough to hold up posters.