As I read for our state book award committee, my reading time is pretty much spoken for most of the year. However, I view Winter Break as a time where I can sneak in a few "grown-up" books with less guilt. What would I most like to read? Here it is, my grown-up book wish list:
History Decoded: The 10 Greatest Conspiracies of All Time (Brad Meltzer)
George Washington's Secret Six (Brian Kilmeade and Don Yaeger)
Miracles and Massacres: True and Untold Stories of the Making of America (Glen Beck)
Prodigy and Champion (Marie Lu)
Mary Poppins (P. L. Travers)
The Bully Pulpit (Doris Kearns Goodwin)
Can you tell that I used to teach 8th grade U.S. history prior to becoming a school media specialist? I'll report back after break on which of these I was able to check off the list along with what I actually read.
Wishing you Happy Reading and the time to do it!
What the Dickens was going on in the LMS Media Center last Monday morning? Our superintendent of schools walked through my media center and not a single child noticed him (unusual as he is 6’ 6” tall). They were all engrossed in reading Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol using Padworx Digital Media’s A Christmas Carol app on iPads. The superintendent was so intrigued; he stopped to peer over the shoulders of a few of the children to see what had so completely captured their attention. Steampunk Charles Dickens, who would have guessed?
Students in this seventh grade language arts class had just completed a novel study of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Today’s lesson centered on each child re-reading a section of text in the app and exploring the interactive features. Each child was randomly assigned a stave so that the entire text was explored. After reading, students wrote about the interactive features and how that feature enhanced the reading experience. They were then were asked to design an additional interactive feature they would like to see in the app and explain how it would deepen others’ understanding of the story.
I was so impressed with the ideas that were batted around the room. Students were reluctant at first to share, but once the first one or two shared, suddenly many hands were up and I could hardly keep order. The discussion included the imagery of the language and how students wanted to see certain pieces of it illustrated. Mood, tone, emotion, and period language were all brought up and dissected. The sound effects and music were lauded for adding to the “creepiness” of certain passages. I learned quite a bit about how my students approach reading a story and that, in truth, they do not want to see every last bit of the story illustrated – a refreshing surprise!
I know it's early, but I needed to get started on this. Hopefully these will help me enjoy the month of December and all the fun it holds.
I resolve that in 2014...
1. I will regularly post to my blog with the goal of at least one new blog post per week.
2. I will post one picture a day to my 365 Project account to create a visual record of 2014.
3. I will keep a record of the books I read on Goodreads including a written review of some sort not just stars.
4. I will not feel compelled to join every social media site on the planet just to try to keep up with the teeming hordes. I will just use the media which make sense in the context of my personal and professional life.
This is probably enough. A realistic and manageable list. What are your resolutions?
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