One of my favorite things is to use technology in whatever class I am teaching. However, when I use technology I want to be sure that I am using technology in meaningful ways to enhance my curriculum. There are a lot of ways to use technology that do not enhance curriculum and just replace what we did before. For example, a lot of my fourth-grade students last year decided to start using their iPads for their Reader’s Notebook rather than a spiral bound notebook. I allowed the students to do this and didn’t have any problem with them using one form of technology to replace paper and pencil – HOWEVER, this is not meaningfully using technology as a tool to help my students retain more information.
I want my students to love reading and I want them to love to come to reading class. I also want my students to really work with texts to understand mood and theme of the text. One way to do this is to have students use technology. My FAVORITE way to use technology is having students make book trailers. Book Trailers are an incredible way to grab students attention and love of technology and combine it meaningfully with reading! The students LOVE making book trailers. When making a book trailer students have to think about the most important parts of the book and relate them to the viewer. The students also have to think about the mood of the book. I always tell my students that I should not hear Disco music if the book was a serious book! The students have to match music and pictures to the mood and theme of the book! It is a perfect way to use iPads in the classroom! iMovie even has pre-made book trailers in their library for students to use! I allow my students to use the templates in iMove for the first couple of book trailers and then they have to graduate to making them from scratch in the expanded form of iMovie. You don’t have to use iMove, you could use any video app or software that you have.
I have used book trailers in 4th and 5th grade. This year I am teaching a 3rd grade reading class and I am going to attempt book trailers with them as well. Below is an example of a book trailer from the book Hatchet. Here is a link to my dropbox folder on Book Trailers. I have taken some of these templates from all over the web – all free. I have adjusted them to suit my needs.
I will continue in this series of posts about technology in reading with how we have used Puppet Pals in reading class.