Archive for the ‘Books and Technology’ Category

This video was produced by Hilary Commer for a Visual Media class at Abilene Christian University.


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A Christmas CarolWhen various movie versions of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens are on television this time of year, I always watch them…along with the old standards A Christmas Story and It’s a Wonderful Life.

For the younger children, Mickey’s Christmas Carol is online at the time of this post.
I’m not sure it’s there legally, but I’m just reporting what I found.

If you want to read A Christmas Carol, online versions for download can be found on Project Gutenberg.
Or listen to it on iTunes.

Login to the Linda’s Links to Literature database for book-related teaching links for A Christmas Carol.

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Again this summer, audiobook publishers and AudioFile Magazine are offering the opportunity to listen to some free bestselling teen books and classics through the SYNC partnership.

Beginning June14 through August 22, two free audio downloads will be recommended. The two offerings will be paired to include a popular teen title and a classic book through a connected theme.

SYNC Titles for Summer 2012

The Eleventh Plague
by Jeff Hirsch, Read by Dan Bittner (Scholastic Audiobooks)
The Grapes of Wrath
by John Steinbeck, Frank Galati [Adapt.], Read by Shirley Knight, Jeffrey Donovan, and a Full Cast (L.A. Theatre Works)

by Francisco X. Stork, Read by Carrington MacDuffie (Listening Library)
Sense and Sensibility
by Jane Austen, Read by Wanda McCaddon (Tantor Media)

The Amulet of Samarkand
by Jonathan Stroud, Read by Simon Jones (Listening Library)
Tales from the Arabian Nights
by Andrew Lang, Read by Toby Stephens (Naxos AudioBooks)

Anna Dressed in Blood
by Kendare Blake, Read by August Ross (AudioGO)
The Woman in White
by Wilkie Collins, Read by Ian Holm (AudioGO)

Guys Read: Funny Business
by Jon Scieszka [Ed.] et al., Read by Michael Boatman, Kate DiCamillo, John Keating, Jon Scieszka, Bronson Pinchot (Harper Audio)
The Notorious Jumping Frog of Calaveras County and Other Stories
by Mark Twain, Read by Norman Dietz (Recorded Books)

Cleopatra’s Moon
by Vicky Alvear Shecter, Read by Kirsten Potter (Oasis Audio)
Antony and Cleopatra
by William Shakespeare, Read by a Full Cast (AudioGO)

by Alfred C. Martino, Read by Mark Shanahan (Listen & Live Audio)
(Brilliance Audio)

Daughter of Smoke and Bone
by Laini Taylor, Read by Khristine Hvam (Hachette Audio)
A Tale of Two Cities
by Charles Dickens, Read by Simon Prebble (Blackstone Audio)

Skulduggery Pleasant
by Derek Landy, Read by Rupert Degas (Harper Audio)
Dead Men Kill
by L. Ron Hubbard, Read by Jennifer Aspen and a Full Cast (Galaxy Press)

The Whale Rider
by Witi Ihimaera, Read by Jay Laga’aia (Bolinda Audio)
The Call of the Wild
by Jack London, Read by William Roberts (Naxos AudioBooks)

And also be sure to take advantage of the promotional tool kit.

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There’s hundreds and probably thousands of picture books apps out there. So how do you know if you should spend your hard-earned money on one? Will it be good or wonderful or just so so? You probably go by reviews and friend referrals.

Read What Makes a Good Picture Book App? from Horn Book for some thoughtful insight.

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School Library Journal has a link to a study titled Student Comprehension of Books in Kindle and Traditional Formats by Michael Milone from Renaissance Learning that indicates there’s no real difference between ebooks and traditional paper books when it comes to kids’ reading comprehension.

Since it’s only one study by a private company, I think it needs to be closely read and evaluated and additional unbiased studies conducted.
And only fiction books were considered. Picture books were not part of the study.
However, it is interesting reading.

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For years, teachers enjoyed using the Reading Rainbow videos in their classrooms to promote reading. Students spent summer vacations reading the books.
When the series ended, many people were saddened.
But good news is ahead! LeVar Burton is creating an educational series for the iPad called RRKidz. This will be Reading Rainbow for today’s generation.
Read more about this new endeavor.

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This month’s featured story at Barnes and Noble Online Storytime is Llama Llama Home with Mama by Anna Dewdney.  Listen to the story and see the illustrations from the book as it is being read by the author.

In this story from the Llama Llama series, Llama Llama feels sick and stays home from school, and Mama takes good care of him.  When Mama feels under the weather, Llama Llama knows how to take care of her, too.

Classroom Ideas:

  • Show the book full screen on individual computers or with a video projector.
  • Use the story in a reading center and have the student follow the words in the book.
  • Use the activities and curriculum ideas on the author’s teacher page.

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