This post was originally published in Nick Glass’ monthly column for Curriculum Connections, an e-newsletter published by School Library Journal in partnership with TeachingBooks.net. Subscribe to this free newsletter here.
At TeachingBooks.net we believe books belong in every K–12 classroom and we strive to support reading experiences by offering multimedia resources to enliven and expand on meaningful conversations about books in the curriculum.
In this post, you’ll find strategies and suggestions that highlight ways educators of all disciplines can incorporate online author interviews, lesson plans, and audio recordings to engage students in any subject area.
We want teachers to know how easy and powerful it can be to have the authors of assigned titles share insights into their work—online, anytime. For example, in this video students can watch and listen to Lois Lowry as she discusses how she came to create the setting for her Newbery winner The Giver (Houghton Mifflin 1993).
Introduce an assigned book with an audio performance such as Susan Adams and Selma Blair’s reading from Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl (Recorded Books 1982).
Host award-winning authors and illustrators in the library each week starting with Patricia Polacco, author of Thank You, Mr. Falker (Philomel, 1998) and The Keeping Quilt (S & S 1988).
Assist student researchers in understanding the context of classic books by directing them to ready-to-use literature guides for assigned readings of titles such as Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God (Lippincott 1937).
Support the literacy development of English Language Learners by sharing videos of authors such as Children’s Poet Laureate Mary Ann Hoberman discussing her collection of poems for two voices You Read to Me, I’ll Read to You: Very Short Stories to Read Together (Little Brown 2001).
Explore ethnic identity in contemporary literature with discussion questions for Sandra Cisneros’ The House on Mango Street (Arte Publico 1983).
Expand on the science concepts found in books for young children by playing amusing audio clips of authors such as Jon Scieszka introducing and reading from Science Verse (Penguin 2004).
Offer professional insights into content-area literacy programs by sharing four award-winning authors (Avi, Sharon Creech, Walter Dean Myers, and Sarah Weeks) as they perform and reflect on Reader’s Theater.
More suggestions for educators can be explored in the Curricular Uses area of TeachingBooks.net:
Posted by Nick Glass, Founder & Executive Director of TeachingBooks.net