Thoreau once wrote we are in danger of becoming the "tool of our tools," but it's doubtful he envisioned a day when there would be so much technology hardware and software to distract and empower us at the same time. Teachers who are grappling with iPads, laptops, kid blogs and cellphones in classrooms share their triumphs and struggles here.
Shared reading and shared writing are essential instructional techniques in the primary grades. How about shared blogging for teaching children basic blogging skills? Cathy Mere describes how it works.
If you’ve ever used a Kindle reader, you might be fascinated by the highlighted notes of other readers. Franki Sibberson uses those notes in a conference with Nicole.
Julie Johnson provides helpful tips and a letter for parents to help keep students safe on the Internet.
Franki Sibberson finds Pinterest is a useful tool for professional development.
Even if your district is blocking web video now, it's not going anywhere. As time goes on, schools will rely more and more on video available from the Internet for research and learning. Bill Bass has practical advice for helping middle and high school students assess everything from suspect sources to appalling comments on the Wild Wild Web.
Julie Johnson reflects on how technology is changing her own reading community, and builds on this knowledge to connect readers and writers in her classroom with others through the Internet.
Franki Sibberson shares some tips and strategies with her fourth graders from the web for focusing and organizing their writing.
Franki Sibberson’s fourth graders use the whole-class writing share time to discuss writing series they are working on (including blog interviews and book reviews), with an eye toward collaborating with classmates.
Tony Keefer taps into the Instagram craze among his students, and finds it is an ingenious tool for encouraging summer reading while kids are on vacation.
Franki Sibberson confers with Ben, a fourth-grade writer trying to figure out the best audience for his writing when technology presents many options.
Cathy Mere explains how she uses technology to stay in touch with students and families over the summer.
Franki Sibberson demonstrates how much ground can be covered in a three-minute conference with a student. She helps fourth grader Pierce think through the audience for his writing, how to add visuals to blog posts, and enlists him to teach others new skills as he acquires them.
Choice Literacy contributors share favorite online tools. This is the second installment in a two-part series.
Choice Literacy contributors share their favorite online reading and writing tools. This is the first installment in a two-part series.
Franki Sibberson has her students read a blog post about books written for boys and girls, which begins a fascinating discussion with the class about gender in reading choices.
Jennifer Vincent explains how recorded texts were a potent tool for reaching a struggling fourth-grade reader.
Katherine Sokolowski uses audio recordings and other tech resources to build her fifth-grade reading community.
Melanie Quinn shares lessons from the fire that burned down her school.
Heather Rader shares the second installment in our primary research series.
Franki Sibberson considers how the demands of the Common Core and the complex mix of online and offline nonfiction texts are changing the skills she teaches students.
Heather Rader launches a new four-part series on teaching research skills in the primary grades. This first installment highlights search techniques for children.
Franki Sibberson’s fourth-grade students share results from the weekly science challenge.
Franki Sibberson uses Wonderopolis with her 4th grade students, helping them learn to research and dig more deeply at the site.
Katherine Sokolowski discovers Edmodo is a wonderful tech tool for helping her fifth graders become more independent and supportive of everyone’s reading choices.
Bryce Bennett develops a four-step process to help high school students use their smartphones to master difficult vocabulary while reading.
Franki Sibberson confers with fourth grader Anna to help her connect report writing with her love of animal lists.
Maria Caplin explains step by step how she integrated the use of iPods into her writing workshop, helping students use them to record notes and create persuasive texts.
Franki Sibberson works with a group of students who want to create a collaborative blog of interviews. The discussion reveals some of the challenges of blog writing, including consistent posting and developing topics that might endure over time.
Franki Sibberson's goal is to provide her students with more tools for previewing books independently and making wise selections. In this lesson, she makes full use of technology to set up sites and resources for students to browse at school or home.
Katherine Sokolowski discovers a seven-day Mock Caldecott unit is a fun way to build a reading community by predicting the winners, and Skyping with another class to share results.
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