Creating Digital Products

Goodbye Frank Shaffer circa 1985 you have been in our community long enough and your worksheets don’t grow dendrites.
Teachers if I can give you any advice please don’t waste instructional time with run-offs from your favorite fill-in-the-blank workbook. I’m telling you now it may keep your kids quiet for a moment but it won’t promote a love of learning and this TED talk will tell you why.
As technology becomes increasingly common place in K12 classroom  it is my hope and dream the rush to the xerox machine before the early morning bell will become less commonplace and time will be spent planning interactive and engaging lessons that do grow dendrites.
Teacher educators who are looking for a paperless way to have students practice phonemic awareness and sentence structure should consider Write Reader for student-driven products that encourage, creativity, imagination and practice of foundational reading skills.
Students can create a book using inventive spelling and upload pictures to illustrate their ideas just like a traditional storybook.  Student books can be shared virtually or printed to include in their assessment portfolio.  There is a section on the page for students to write and for an adult to provide corrective feedback.
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When creating the book students can type in words and here the sounds of the letters typed using their audio tool.  Images are easily insert via desktop or google search engine. Students can also use the audio dictate tool to narrate their story. Best of all the tool interface is easily managed by the classroom teacher who can create student accounts without any email needed.
This tool is specifically targeted for k-5 students however older students with learning disabilities can surely benefit from the structured format and additional support features that more sophisticated tools like Ibook author fail to incorporate.
I don’t do handouts in my class anymore.  We create our hand-outs, notes and products as an assessments of student learning.  Teachers please give up the habit of prepackage curriculum with a packet of workshop to assess students ability to fill in the blank and perform rote tasks.  Student-drive products are finally here and can be seamlessly integrated with a click, click, here, and a click, click there. Check out this student created book with audio narration.  Kids love hearing themselves read a story they created.
Got a tool to share? Would you like to write a post for this blog? Contact Dr. Dickenson with your idea: pdickenson@nu.edu

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