Welcome Kindergarten Teachers to Global Read Aloud!

I know one group we have left out all these years have been our fabulous Kindergarten teachers and mostly because I just didn’t know what to do for this great group of teachers.  So here is the idea:

Your very own read aloud during the 6 weeks as well, same idea is to connect with other classrooms, but instead of one chapter book it would be a picture book author study.  So for this very first year of trying this we will be doing an author study on the phenomenal Eric Carle!  The concept will be the same; read the books aloud and then connect with as many classrooms as you see fit.

And of course, you don’t have to be kindergarten to be a part of this – you can choose to do this with whichever group you would like.

The Edmodo group for teacher has been set up with the code being ygqh89

To sign up – go here


See You in 2013!

To say that this year’s Global Read Aloud was a success is an understatement.  With almost 30,000 students, more than 800 different facilitators and 6 continents represented, this project has truly taken on a life of its own.  So thank you if you participated or helped in any way.  Next year the project will be even better (hopefully) and will be either 5 or 6 weeks long per feedback from this year.

Who knows which books will be shared but I am already open to your suggestions.  Sign up now to participate next year and stay in the loop of all things Global Read Aloud.

And you are not quite sure what the Global Read Aloud is, please read this.

And if you have signed up and don’t know what to do now, just wait, information will be coming in the summer of 2013.

Thank You

Thank you so much from the bottom of my heart for being part of the
second Global read Aloud project. What started as one harebrained
idea one late night in 2010 culminated this year in more than 2,000
students around the world all reading the same two books. To say that
I am humbled by the eagerness and passion people dedicate to this is
an understatement.

So as we wrap up for this year, I need to hear from you. Your
feedback is what drives me to start thinking about next year’s project
and how it can be better than this year. To make your life easy, I
made a Google survey for all of you to take. Please do take it and
don’t hold back, this is a continual work in progress.


To all of my wonderful collaborators, thank you so much for dedicating
your time to work behind the scenes with me. It made my life and that
of my family’s much easier.

The Edmodo student groups will be disbanded this weekend so if you
have any work you need to get out of there, please do so. The teacher
groups will remain.

Thank you also to all of those who continue to vote for my classroom
in the Great American teach Off. $10,000 to my school would possibly
mean new gym floor or carpeting in our classrooms so every vote
matters. www.good.is/gato

Please continue to reach out to me with any questions, concerns or
comments. I am very accessible through email or Twitter @pernilleripp

A final note from the Flat Stanley group:
Many people in the Flat Stanley group indicated an interest in
continuing with our Edmodo discussions and other connections by
reading Stanley In Space. For those that are interested, we’ll start
reading the book during the week of October 31st. More details on the
week-by-week breakdown of activities are here. Please email Aviva
(dunsiger@yahoo.com) if you have any questions about this.

A $10,000 Opportunity

This post is from Pernille Ripp, the creator of the Global Read Aloud

As some of you may know, a couple of weeks ago I was told I was one of 10 finalists in the Great American Teach Off.  This contest was created to highlight great elementary educators across the nation and I am frankly astounded to be part of the group.  And yet, here I am super excited, super proud of the work I do and very eager to showcase it.  Not only that but the grand prize in the contest is $10,000 for my classroom.  
The last two weeks I have been very busy creating videos highlighting my students and how we are innovative and making a difference and now I need your help.  The final part of the contest is a nationwide vote-off.  Every week they post a video and the lowest two vote-getters will be eliminated until finally one is left standing.  I do feel like I am on American Idol right now, but thankfully it is not my singing chops being evaluated but rather me as a teacher.
Voting starts on Monday at 1 PM at www.good.is/gato and you can vote once a day for the week.  If I survive the first week then I have to get people to vote the following week and so on.  
So if you have a moment, would you please consider voting for my classroom (on Monday)?  
These students work their hearts out, sharing their journeys with the world, and we try to be innovative within the very rigid public school framework.  I am proud of the accomplishments of my students, their eagerness to try and fail, and their willingness to share it all with the world. 
$10,000 for us would mean more books in our library, perhaps a new gym floor, or even carpet in our classroom so we could snuggle up with good books.  There are many deserving educators out there and I am one of many, so here is our chance to get more money into a public school and that is a wonderful thing.

Making Meaningful Music for Mae

The students in Gill-Ville have been enjoying visualizing and imagining many of the details found in Tuck Everlasting.  We are captivated by music, as are the characters in the story, by Mae Tuck’s music box. We spent some time thinking about the kind of music and types of instruments that sound like tunes from a music box.  The students collaborated and brainstormed a list of words that helped them imagine the sound that the music would make.  Here is a screen shot of our ideas.

Once we had a general idea of what the music box might sound like students used Garageband to create their own version of the tune the music box might play.  We used built in musical loops that used appropriate instruments and tones.  The students also used the built in piano keyboard to add their own melody as well.  We kept the songs short because music boxes usually play a short song that gets repeated. Here is an example for you to listen to.  Enjoy!

And This is Just the Beginning!

Our class, known as Gill-Ville (@Gill_Villeans on twitter) is participating in the Global Read Aloud Project for a second time.  We had such an amazing experience last year (read about it here) that there was no question whether we would participate again this year.

We had the common goal this week to read the prologue and up to chapter six. We had two trips this week as well as a PD Day, we are already a little behind, but that’s quite alright! So far we are enjoying the story. Students have joined a special group on Edmodo to talk with other students about the book. We have already answered a few polls on Edmodo that asked us which country we lived in, our predictions for the book, and whether we’ve read it before or not. We are also contributing to the online wiki where classes are posting their work using a variety of web tools. In our class, we started by making predictions using LinoIt . https://i0.wp.com/blogs.wrdsb.ca/gillk/files/2011/09/Screen-shot-2011-09-22-at-1.39.41-PM.png

We then turned the discussion to whether or not “life everlasting” would be a good thing.  Here is a screen shot of some of the responses that were shared during our discussion.

As we began reading the first chapter, we discovered many new or unusual words in the story. Students worked in partners and used the “Use Your Handwriting” app on the iPad to create personalized word lists from the chapter.

This story is a novel that does not include many pictures or images for the students to look at. This gave us a great opportunity to work on visualizing. This task is very tricky for many of us who struggle with auditory learning so we began working together to describe the setting using the SMARTBoard. Here is our representation of the road to Treegap as described in the first chapter.

The text then goes on the describe the wooded area beyond the road that is very important to the plot of the story. Students listened carefully to find details in the text that they could draw. Here is an example of the wood as visualized by Emilee.

As we moved on to chapter two, we started to meet some of the characters in the story. The first character we meet is Mae Tuck, the mother of two boys and wife to Tuck. The text provides a very detailed description of Mae that we used to help us visualize her appearance. In the computer lab today the students used SumoPaint, an online art program that can be used at home, to create their drawings of Mae Tuck. From this picture below, can you tell us something about her? You can see the students’ drawings and descriptions of Mae Tuck on their blog posts from yesterday!

We can’t wait to get back at it next week as we look forward to Skyping and chatting with some classes about the book!  

A Veteran Shares Why They Joined GRA Again

My 4th grade class participated in the first Global Read Aloud during the fall of 2010 to help my 4th graders expand their world.

We read The Little Prince along with the other classes.  We first posted comments to our Kidblog. We connected on Twitter and TodaysMeet with a classroom in Canada.  My students were thrilled to learn about this other country, even though the city  these other students were in was not that far away.

The students were excited for our read aloud each day. They drew pictures of the Prince’s journey and their favorite part.  We created an Animoto of these images.  We also created a Voice Thread  to share our favorite part of the book. We posted this information on my school website for parents and the Global Read Wiki. My students put many higher level thinking skills to use while doing these projects. They had to express themselves to others without face-to-face connections, yet they knew others seeing their work had read the same book.

After The Little Prince, we continued to connect with other classrooms while reading two other books.  We used Edmodo, Wikis, and Skype.  This really solidified the concept of expanding their world outside our small town in northeast Wisconsin.

With this valuable experience my students were exposed to quality literature and held a 21st century book talk with other students. When asked at the end of the year, their participation in the Global Read Aloud was one of their favorite experiences of the year.

Participating again in 2011, I hope to have my new class connect outside the United States again.  I want them to expand their ability to use Web 2.0 skills with Edmodo, Twitter, and Voice Thread.  I also want the chance to have face-to-face connections using Skype. I would highly recommend getting involved in the Global Read Aloud.

Debbie Burmeister
Grade 4 Teacher
Neenah, Wisconsin