Technology made this so easy that it seemed crazy and irresponsible
that we had never attempted something like this before.
Others responded, and my students
excitedly called out the places where
people were reading the book: Michigan, Florida, Australia, Canada, and
many in Wisconsin. We got a map so
that we could pushpin all of the locations and learn a bit more about the
world in the process. GoogleMaps became a favorite tool as we explored the
geography of the world.
One Tool a Week
Every week, as we read our chapters,
I wanted to introduce the students to
at least one new tool. The first week
was blogging, and then came the
wonderful world of Animoto. We
had already created a phenomenal
video for our combined grade 4–5
classroom, but we knew that this tool
would allow us to share our drawings and thoughts while we read the
book aloud. We made several videos.
One of my favorites was an Animoto
that shared students’ drawings of the
prince’s home planet. Their vision was
We promoted our participation
through Twitter using the hashtag
#glread10 as well as on our wiki, and
the students were amazed at how easy
it was to reach someone on the other
side of the planet. A global connection, indeed.
The third week started on a dismal
note. My students were to be split into
regular classrooms and would no
longer be a grade 4–5 combination.
The first question my students had
after the tears was, “What about the
read aloud?” I did not know. I only
knew that our time together was much
shorter, as half the class would soon
be leaving to join another teacher.
This created a new urgency. We tweet-
ed, we blogged, we even Skyped with a
special education classroom in Cana-
da. We made videos of ourselves talk-
ing with our new Flip cameras, and
we read. Everyday, the kids begged for
just one more page. What was going
to happen to the prince?
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