A Reading Nook for Me

it’s a quiet place

a little sun

a little shade

a willow tree reaches for the sky

the weeds weave in and out

sounds of the summer abound

morning doves cooing

robins chirping

cicadas singing a summer song

but a hideaway 

just to sit

to relax

to read

a reading nook

just for me

2015-07-23-10-24

my reading nook

~~~~~

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Currently #cyberPD

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thinking:

#cyberPD has been on my mind a lot lately!  Thinking, pondering, questioning… Is it a culmination or a commencement? Perhaps a little of both. While I have finished reading Digital Reading What’s Essential in Grades 3-8, I have so many ideas and visions. I keep telling myself I need to focus and not get overwhelmed. And, I need implement my ideas and visions one step at a time.  Thanks to #cyberPD some of the ideas on my mind are Global Read Aloud, Biblionasium, Weebly, and Padlet. Also, I am glad that Franki shared her revised survey that focuses on digital reading (p. 89). Clearly it is time for me to revise my survey that definitely takes into consideration digital reading. I’ve also been pondering my formative assessment tools.  What do I want to be my focus as I get ready to embark on the new school year?

reading:

The reading is finished, accomplished, complete!  Chapter 6 (Assessment: Keeping Our Eye on the Literacy) & Chapter 7 (Beyond the Classroom Walls: Connecting Digital Reading at Home and School) are now wrapped up and if you visit my Goodreads page you will see that Digital Reading is now on the “read” shelf with 5 stars behind it.

As I perused Chapter 7 I have to admit that I am very fortunate to work for a district that is very progressive in terms of technology.  When my learners return to the classroom in August, every learner in grades 4-6 will have their own iPad. You can read all about our One:World Initiative here. My task will be to maximize the resources the district has provided and take full advantage to the tools I have available to me. There are many benefits that our One:World initiative will embrace and Bass & Sibberson outline those benefits brilliantly on p. 101 of the text. Some of the those benefits that resonate with me are that students become digital creators by becoming independent and critical readers and parents have more access to learning in the classroom. Communication is literally at their finger tips.

listening:

This may be a stretch, but yes I have been listening.  Listening to the others in the #cyberPD community. Being my first experience with Google+, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading the posts and comments on the #cyberPD page.  Members have shared happenings in their classrooms, contributed their thoughts on the reading, and visited my blog by sharing kind words and offering inspiration. My ears and eyes are open and I value the collaboration of the group.

wanting:

A cliche perhaps, but what do teachers *always* need?  More time!!!! Yes, I want more time. More time to chat about the book, more time to implement my ideas, and more time to share.

needing:

I absolutely have enjoyed collaborating with others in the group.  What I’m needing is that feeling of collaboration within my district.  I need to recruit a teacher or two in my school to share the topics and ideas that have manifested during these last three weeks. Blogging will hopefully help me keep the inspiration and vision alive.

sharing:

So many websites, apps, classroom vignettes, and ideas have been shared.  As I have perused blogs and tweets one thing that has not presented itself is the utilization of a Learning Management System (LMS). The focus of chapter 6 was assessment and in my classroom I have spent a significant amount of time building my LMS, Schoology.  Schoology allows me to build a digital portfolio and keep an in-depth “grade book”. (I use that term loosely because our district does not use grades.) I love that I can recall assignments and comments in just a matter of seconds.

Now we can’t forget about chapter 7 either! Schoology is also a way that I am able to connect our digital classroom with parents and other colleagues. I use Schoology for collaborating, assessing, and discussing…just to name a few!  If you have a moment to check out Schoology, please do so. I know this would be a great topic for a blog post and, in fact, it’s on my list of blog topics. If you use Schoology, I would love to hear from you!

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A special thank you to Cathy Mere of Reflect and Refine, Michelle Nero of Literacy Learning Zone, and Laura Komos for hosting #cyberPD 2015. Click here to learn more about #cyberPD.

#cypberpd 2015

#cypberpd 2015

~~~~~

Slice of Life

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3, 2, 1 #cyberPD

A special thank you to Cathy Mere of Reflect and Refine, Michelle Nero of Literacy Learning Zone, and Laura Komos for hosting #cyberPD 2015. Click here to learn more about #cyberPD.

#cypberpd 2015

#cyberPD 2015

So let’s take a quick & snappy look at chapters 3-5 from Digital Reading What’s Essential in Grades 3-8.

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#cyberPD 2015

Three…Check it Out! – 3 digital resources that have piqued my curiosity

There are so many excellent resources in chapters 3-5 that I found myself a bit overwhelmed.  But that’s okay! I was able to slim it down to three resources that I feel would be worthwhile for my classroom of learners.

  • Padlet (padlet.com): This is a digital bulletin board that allows students to collect and share their thinking.  I feel Padlet will promote individual thinking and broaden the understanding of the text as learners share their thoughts.
  • Kidsreads (www.kidsreads.com) & PebbleGo (www.pebblego.com): I love the ability of always having fresh and new reading material for my learners.  Kidsreads allows students to read book reviews and review reading lists.  PebbleGo, on the other hand, has a vast selection on nonfiction reading with videos to engage the reader.  I also feel these would be excellent sites to refer to parents who are seeking reading material for their child.
  • Student Blogging:  The concept of student blogging keeps popping up everywhere I turn!  I just need to take the plunge and get my learners online.  There were several platforms mentioned throughout chapters 3-5, but I feel that Kidblog (www.kidblog.com) is the platform that I would like to use.

Two…Take It Away! – 2 ways I would like to connect my classroom to the outside digital world

  • Global Read Aloud (theglobalreadaloud.com): Since I do not have a self-contained classroom I would love to collaborate with several classroom teachers in my building and experience the connection of one book to the world. The Global Read Aloud site is already up and running and the timing of the event is perfect.  There is plenty of time to prepare and plan for the event and it does not interfere with state testing. 🙂

Save the date: October 5, 2015-November 13, 2015

  • World Read Aloud Day (litworld.org): This may be perfect for my learners since I do not have a self-contained classroom or for a teacher who wants to connect to the world but does not want to participate in an event that lasts several weeks.

Save the date: February 24, 2016

One…Quote It! – 1 quote, big meaning

Sometimes the best strategies for a teacher is to simply get out of the way and let students make some of the decisions that might traditionally be made by their teacher. (p.63)

  • The vignette on page 75 between Mr. Jones and Colin made me chuckle!  And, it made me realize that our learners want to take ownership in their education.  As the teacher, I need to be willing to relinquish that ownership to them.

reading time + writing time = summertime!

#cypberPD 2015

#cyberPD 2015

Some may think that when the students are away the teachers will play, but that’s not the case!  At least in my PLN it’s not.  Last week #cyberPD embarked on yet another year of bringing educators together for the reading and discussing of a hot topic in the world of literacy.  And, I’m happy to say that this year I am not going to be just lurking or stalking.  I too will be posting and promoting the book of choice for 2015, Digital Reading What’s Essential in Grades 3-8 by William L. Bass ll & Franki Sibberson.

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#cyberPD 2015

Now, just in case you were wondering what else I have been reading this summer here is a peek at my professional reading.

professional reading

professional reading

And, here are the books I am going to read so that I can share with my students and colleagues when the school year begins in August.

summer reading

summer reading

Last but not least, I needed to mix in some “just for fun” adult reading!

just for fun reading

just for fun reading

So it goes without saying, a little reading plus a little writing (a.k.a. blogging) equals summertime!

A special thank you to Cathy Mere of Reflect and Refine, Michelle Nero of Literacy Learning Zone, and Laura Komos for hosting #cyberPD 2015. Click here to learn more about #cyberPD.

~~~~~Slice of Life

Slice of Life

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