Read Aloud…is it worth it?

Yes, it is totally worth it! I had a chance to present with another amazing 2nd grade teacher, Elaine, at my school about the joy and importance of read aloud at the KORCOS conference on Friday. It was a pretty relaxed and hopefully informative session for the people that came. Here is the slide show that we presented. A lot of these nuggets of information we gained last summer at the Teacher’s College Summer Reading Institute.

We also modeled reading aloud two different picture books. Some of the strategies we modeled were stop & jot, turn & talk, allowing students to envision by not showing the pictures at first, and thinking aloud as you are reading as a mentor reader for your students.

Elaine & Me

Here is a link to the wiki site, where we put a list of books we recommend for read aloud, book clubs, poetry and mentor texts.

I absolutely love read aloud time with my students. I’m glad I could share some of this passion I have with other educators at the KORCOS conference. Again, if you have any questions about any of our posts or other education related questions, feel free to leave a comment.  We will do our best to respond to your questions. Or just let us know that you stopped by our site. 🙂 Like Melody mentioned in her post, we ❤ comments!

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Blogging for Beginners: KORCOS edition!

Friday was an exciting day. Jee Young and I were able to present at KORCOS on Blogging for Beginners! Like many presentations involving technology, we had a few minor glitches that made me regret not packing an extra pack of tissue paper in my purse (for the sweat), but overall it went really well. The workshop was packed with teachers ready to learn, and blogs were created!

We covered what is in our Blogging for Beginners tab here on our two apples a day page, as well as gave a step by step process for creating a simple wordpress.com (our platform of choice) blog. These steps are on the KORCOS wiki page.

A few questions that were asked:

Why do you use wordpress?

I have noticed that blogger pages through gmail tend to have problems in Korea. There are times when the page is only in Korean, even if my computer is set to English settings. Also…I have had blogs through both platforms, and I just like wordpress better, I feel that it is very user friendly.

Can you make your blog private?

Of course you can! If you have a wordpress blog, the privacy setting is under the settings tab on the left side of the page when you are at your dashboard. (I believe you can make any blog private through most platforms).

How often do you blog personally?

To be honest, when you first start blogging- it is important to blog often! Jee Young and I take turns throughout the week, and usually take a day or two off on the weekends. My personal blog has suffered a bit due to my graduate class, and this awesome new site, but if you recall from Jee Young’s recent post, she is blogging EVERY DAY. Crazy woman.

There were many more questions… but a lot of them were specific to the person, or I don’t remember them. If you have questions feel free to write a comment (WE LOVE COMMENTS).

I don’t know why no one told me my name tag was twisted backwards^^.

Jee Young also presented on Read Alouds… she may share pictures and her experience from that later (I haven’t actually talked to her about it yet, hehe!)

What are some great professional development conferences that you go to? What are some awesome workshops you’ve been to, or have presented at?

Remember, sharing is caring!

Celebrating Read Aloud

I still remember the Korean picture book my mom used to read to me when I was little, 101 Dalmations. I know it sounds so random, but I can still remember some of the pictures from the book and of course the story, everyone is familiar with. I used to love getting books read by my mom, don’t know why she stopped! 🙂

As I started teaching fifth grade here in Korea, I’ve really enjoyed being able to read aloud to my students. I try to spend a good chunk of time everyday reading aloud. Sometimes the read aloud might relate to what we’re learning in science. Other times we are reading through a chapter book that can last over a few weeks. I love reading picture books with great illustrations. Those are my absolute favorite.

Here is a really interesting article about the importance of read aloud by the Donalyn Miller. She’s the author of one of my favorite teacher books, The Book Whisperer.

Make Every Day Read Aloud Day Article by the Book Whisperer

Also, did you know that there’s a world read aloud day?? How cool is that.

World Read Aloud Day on March 7th

There’s also Read Across America every year, and this year it’s based on the book The Lorax by Dr. Seuss, just in time of when the movie comes out. Our school does something similar to this, but we pick our own theme that works. In the past, we’ve done Read Across Asia and Dr. Seuss theme. This year’s theme it’s Kevin Henkes. I’m sure either Melody or I will be post more about that later!

NEA- Read Across America

My friend and co-worker Elaine will be presenting at Korcos at Chadwick International School on March 7th about using read aloud in your classroom. We will be modeling and giving helpful tips! Please make sure to join us if you’re interested.

Some of my favorite read alouds!

What was your favorite book you got read to you?

What books do you like to read aloud to your students?

The Progressive Story Project

As international teachers, Jee Young and I are constantly looking for ways to be involved with other schools in other countries. Last year, we attended a yearly teaching conference in Seoul (KORCOS) and learned about the Progressive Story Project. To summarize it simply, five classes are partnered to write one story, and each class is responsible for illustrating their section of the story. They also record their section of the story on voicethread.

Karen Ditzler started this project several years with a couple classes in an elementary school district in the USA. Since then it has spread, and this past fall classrooms were represented from a total of 10 countries and 29 States… 289 classes altogether!

When my second grade class took on this project last Spring, our story started with a class in Australia and ended in Pennsylvania, USA. It is a great and easy way to incorporate technology into the classroom, and there is a chance that the classes you are paired up with will be in your same time zone, giving you the chance to skype with each other. Which is how my students made several Australian friends! We were able to have a couple of “skype dates”, and talk about the story we were writing together, we also had the chance to share things about our perspective countries and cultures. The students loved it.

I am a visual learner, and because of this I feel it necessary to include my students’ illustrations from last year, their story turned into a mystery and our section was describing “the suspects”. I will leave you with this:

  

and remember… two apples a day will keep your students happy^^