Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Digital Reading Workshop

I created this list of questions a year or two ago as I thought about the idea that a digital reading or writing workshop was not about one unit of study or the idea of letting kids read ereaders. That as we figure out how the whole idea of reading has expanded, are we making rooms for all kinds of reading in our classrooms. I revisited this list last week as I am thinking about the ways in which my students use digital tools and the ways in which they are growing as readers and writers. Definitely questions I'll come back to that help me think about the messages I am giving students about what counts as reading these days. As always, I feel pretty good when I ask myself a few of these questions and with others, I have work to do.

What role do digital texts have in your reading workshop?
Read Aloud
Do I choose to read aloud only texts from traditional books or do I share digital texts, audio books, blog posts, etc. during read aloud?
Do we use web resources such as author websites and book trailers to help us dig deeper into the book we are reading?
Do I read aloud from websites and blogs?
Do I utilize keyword tags, comments, links, and search features while reading aloud?
 Independent Reading/Reading Conferences
Do we use online resources for book previewing and book selection?
Do I limit students' independent reading to traditional books or do they have a variety of options for their reading time?  Do I place equal value on reading on e-readers, reading websites, reading short pieces, etc. as I do on reading traditional books?
Do I help my students use online tools to support their lives as readers? Do I value annotation tools, bookmarking tools, RSS feeds, etc. as part of my readers lives? Do I model these tools in minilessons?
Do I introduce digital pieces and discuss digital reading when conferring with students?
Have I updated my reading interview to include questions about digital reading?
Do students have ways to add a social component to their lives as readers? Are they connected to others because of their reading?

Reading Minilessons
Do I use digital pieces, as well as traditional texts when teaching minilessons?
Do I rely completely on traditional text or do I use film clips, blog entries, podcasts, etc. when planning minilessons?
Do I share process in my minilessons? Do I tend to share process only as it relates to creating text-based pieces?
Do I teach minilessons that are universal, regardless of format of piece?
Do I share my own  process, consuming and composing in several types of media?
Do I use minilesson time to demonstrate tools tools that support deeper reading with a variety of texts?
Shared Reading
Have I reflected on the resources I rely on for Shared Reading?
Do I include web reading and viewing when thinking about Shared Reading experiences?
How can I include a variety of texts for students to process through together?
Content Reading
Have I found sources for content reading that go beyond textbooks and traditional text?
Do I rely on newspapers for talk around current events or do I tend to focus more on sites like DOGONews, Time for Kids,  and other sites that combine text and visual features?
How am I supporting the importance of visual information in the content areas?


  1. And here we think again... Thanks, Franki!

  2. Franki, this is so timely! As we've tried to incorporate more on-line reading choices in reading workshop, we've noticed that we need to build some bridges between reading books and reading digital resources. This list of questions to think about is so helpful!

  3. I love these questions! Thank you for nudging my thinking.

  4. As I introduce 1:1 iPads this week I am struggling with similar questions. Thank you for helping me stay focused this week.

    It is very challenging getting all the pieces into place and having it be meaningful.

  5. Franki~
    So much to think about…
    My biggest struggle-

    Do I teach minilessons that are universal, regardless of format of piece?

    This year my kids are bringining books from home to share with classmates (thank you Shelfari!) The glimpse into what my kids choose to read at home has forced me to look at my focus lessons in a different way. How can I teach reading strategies in a way that readers will generalize these strategies in any reading…?

  6. Yes, so many thought provoking questions! I suppose one of the questions I ask myself as an educator and book lover; how do "I" marry technology with traditional literacy so love is not lost, rather enhanced.


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