Digital Books

Digital Books are a great way to motivate reluctant readers. Here are some tips for using digital books at home:

•There are two categories of digital books: enhanced and basic. Enhanced digital books  (seen more on the IPAD) provide readers with animation, sound effects, videos, games, and  provide a variety of after-reading activities. Basic digital books (seen more on the Kindle and Nook) only provide the original text.
•Enhanced digital books increase engagement. Many reluctant readers love enhanced digital books.
•Applications can support the reading of digital books providing prompts for parents and activities for students. Storia (from scholastic) is an example of an application that provides enhanced and basic digital books for the IPAD. Kindle FreeTime provides access to almost all of the digital books available to download onto the Kindle for young readers.
•For younger readers (3-8) digital books have mixed reviews because they do increase engagement but studies have shown a decrease in conversation that supports comprehension between parents and children. The conversations have focused on the tablet not on the text.
•Many libraries allow readers to borrow digital books from their websites. Studies have shown an increase in library use for digital readers. The book automatically disappears from the device (if it is connected to the internet) at the end of the loan.
•For readers struggling with decoding most digital books come with the option to have the text read aloud while they follow along. It allows students to focus on comprehension instead of decoding.
•Many digital book applications provide children with rewards for reading more books. Reading Rainbow (an application for the IPAD) rewards readers with games, stickers, and movies for reading books.


This Week in Guided Reading

At CL the Guided Q group will be reading the fairytale  The Princess and the Dragon. This once upon a time tale features a modern day princess. Listen to Robert Munsch read his book, The Paper Bag Princess. How are these princesses different from classic princesses like Snow White, Cinderella, or Sleeping Beauty? Think about moden day princesses (Rapanzuel, Merida) what characteristics do they have? Compare and contrast these two types of princesses.

Word of the Month (CLE): Responsibility

peppePeppe, a young immigrant, lives in a tenement in Little Italy in the early 1900s.  His dad is ill, his mom is deceased, and Peppe must find a way to support his eight sisters.  Peppe finds a temporary job as a lamplighter, and he accepts the job with pride and excitement. His proud father believes this is inferior work until one evening there is a turn in the events. Peppe demonstrates responsibility in his job as a lamplighter.  Like Peppe you are asked to be responsible with your daily activities by being prepared for school, completing assignments, arriving on time, and acting appropriately. The willingness to accept responsibility for what is required of you is the key to success.  Discuss Peppe the Lamplighter with your parent(s).  Have him/her describe his/her first job to you and how responsibility played an important part in the job.  Post these stories to our blog.

Owls! Owls!

At CL many 5th grade classes have just completed their owl units. Alessondra, a seven year old from Oklahoma, has set up a camera to capture a great horned owl nesting. This website is child friendly and was created by her with the help of her mother. Alessondra's baby owlets have hatched and are growing every day. This is a great companion video for the Owls in the Family book. Please enjoy Alessondra's website:

Women’s History Month

In honor of Women’s History month, we celebrate former U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Antonia Coello Novello. When Dr. Antonia Coello Novello was appointed Surgeon General of the United States by President George Bush in 1990, she was the first woman and the first Hispanic ever to hold that office. Her appointment came after nearly two decades of public service at the National Institutes of Health, where she took a role in drafting the Organ Transplantation Procurement Act of 1984. One of her most visible and effective campaigns was against the 1980s tobacco industry advertising aimed at children that featured the cartoon character “Joe Camel.” Continuing her childhood dream to help other sick children, in 1993 she left her post as U.S. Surgeon General to work for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF). She later became Health Commissioner for the state of New York where she continued her efforts to increase awareness for urban health and education.