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.

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.

There is an App for That!

The Reading Rainbow App is a great app for reading. Children can choose to read a book themselves or have it read to them. After completing a book the child receives a sticker and unlocks a game. There are many virtual field trip to unlock through reading and rereading books. The field trips provide children the opportunity to explore topics introduced in books they have read. The app picks books the child maybe interested in based on age, gender, and favorite things. The program comes with a free book for each child per device it is installed on. My sons love to listen to the stories and touch the pictures to make the story come alive. Below are pictures from each of my son’s backpacks. Jack picked a pirate theme and a pirate book. Edward picked a space theme and has earned 4 stickers to place on his island. This is a wonderful app that features high quality picture books. When I was a child I loved Reading Rainbow. I am glad that I have the opportunity to share it with my children.



This Week in Guided Reading

At CL the Level Q groups are reading a non fiction book titled A New Vision. The book is a biography about Sabriye Tenberken (a blind woman from Germany) who opens the first school for the blind in Tibet. Please watch this news story about the opening of her school. What do you think about Tibet's view of blindness (people were born that way because they were very bad in past lives)? How has this affected the education blind people have recieved in Tibet? How will this school change Tibet?