The one thing that takes this amazing project to a whole other level is the ability for students to communicate. Do not treat this read aloud like a regular 1980’s novel study. If you are using worksheets, pre-made tests then you are completely dropping the ball. Instead as a teacher, do your homework and make connections. Through platforms like Edmodo, Twitter, Weebly, Kidblogs etc… it has never been easier. Don’t wait for others to do the legwork for you in terms of connecting. You are capable, so start adding teachers and classrooms now.
Once the platforms are in place let your students connect with other kids and teachers around the world, and share information and ideas about the book. Engagement, understanding and enjoyment will never be higher. In other words students will love reading and arriving to class in the morning. Trust me!
Here are frameworks I have set into place so my kids can get the most out of the amazing Global Read Aloud Project:
- Connect daily reading to the child’s multiple intelligence. My grade 6 students are all in different stations throughout the room learning how they learn best…their way.
- Set up Edmodo groups to connect students globally who are reading the same novel. Have thought prompting questions for them daily, but also allow them autonomy to have discussions with their new global friends and PLN. (Yes each kid, like us, needs a personalized learning network.)
- Blog, Blog, Blog. My students all have Weebly accounts where they share their learning. But what takes blogging to another level are the comments. Teacher you need to start a blog roll and have your kids comment on other blogs and vice versa.
- Skype often.
- Have a before or after school tea club. Kind of like a “Dead Poets Society”, where you open up in-depth novel dialogue. It is amazing how many kids will join in to talk literature. How cool is that!
- Use digital platforms to engage and enhance. Don’t tell kids the apps but rather let them choose. For example, some of my kids want to talk about plot through an Adobe Voice and Adobe Slade presentation.
- Have a classroom Twitter handle and hashtag. (Make sure you share the hashtag for others to see). If students have their own accounts let them tweet openly. They love it.
- Make time to be a part of the author’s novel concluding Google Hangout.
It is the eve of arguably the most important project you will run in your room this year. Please embrace the opportunities the great Perille Ripp has afforded us. I hope this post has given you some ideas. I will be reading “Fish In A Tree” as there is zero percent chance I would pass on a Lynda Mullaly Hunt novel. If you have not connected please don’t wait any longer. Write me a comment below or send me a message on Twitter @rondorland and I will add you to my novel contacts. The map above are the connections I made last year, and if you click here you can read a post I wrote last year on just how engaged my class was. Happy reading everyone!