First I created a short PowerPoint about how to browse or "taste" a book.
Next I ran a STAR Reading report for each 2nd-5th grade class and divided them into four to five like reading ability groups. This is probably the most time consuming part of planning/preparing this type of lesson.
Finally, I pulled 6-10 books for each group that would fit their reading ability and placed them on serving tray on a table along with a flower vase and some battery operated candles, just to set the mood. I pulled non-fiction books since that is our Genre of the Month. Also since most students don't usually go straight for non-fiction, this was a great chance to show students that non-fiction can be enjoyable, too.
After the first book tasting lesson with a second grade class, I realized it might be helpful to have a list of adjectives to help fill out the menu, so I created this list, laminated it and placed several copies of it at each table. It took the second grade class longer to fill out their menu, so I also thought it might be better to do a guided "tasting" and only "taste" one book. So I created a shorter menu for 2nd and 3rd graders.
If you're interested in how other TL/SLMS have done their book tatstings, you might like to check out these blog posts:
Mrs. Lodge's Library: "Book Tasting" (This is the blog post that the book tasting menus are based on.)
The Unquiet Librarian: Book Tasting posts
Barrow Media Center "Book Tasting"
Miss Liberry Teacher "Book Tasting"
So have you ever done a book tasting? If so, how did it go?