How technology can help teachers create summer reading lists

Posted on Monday, 3/18/2013 10:00 am

As the end of the school year approaches, teachers need to start thinking about what books they will require their students to read over summer vacation. In the past, this process may have proved quite challenging. Now, however, with technology so readily available, putting together summer reading lists is more convenient than ever.

Here are a few ways in which teachers can use technology to plan summer reading lists for their students:

Use online tools to research books
While teachers can certainly share summer reading ideas with one another through faculty software or face-to-face conversation, they can also receive help narrowing down their lists on the internet. One website educators may want to familiarize themselves with is Scholastic's Book Wizard, as it provides them with an opportunity to search books according to title, grade level and reading level. If instructors find a few books they think would make good picks, they can also use the Book Wizard to find similar titles.

Pick up ideas from published reading lists
With a little searching, teachers will find several examples of summer reading lists, as well as book suggestions on various websites. For example, Barnes & Noble's website features summer reading picks from staff members for various grade levels.

At the same time, some school districts place their summer reading lists online. Although these lists are mostly there for the sake of students and their parents, teachers who are looking to gain inspiration can also take a peek. For example, Boston Public Schools' website currently features reading lists for grades K-12.

Collaborate with fellow teachers online
If teachers have accounts on one or more social media websites, such as Facebook and Twitter, they can use these platforms to connect with educators outside of their school districts. For example, an English instructor in Massachusetts could send a brief message to a teacher in California and receive the summer reading input they desire.

Meanwhile, Twitter users could tweet at teachers or education experts they respect, and maybe these individuals will respond with a few book suggestions of their own.

Ultimately, teachers should plan their summer reading lists any way that feels most comfortable to them. However, so long as they have access to technology and the internet, they never have to be alone in this process.



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