Summer Reading Goes Digital

The students at Momentous School are hard at work on their summer reading. And we know they're enjoying it, because we can see their progress! Read more about how we went digital with summer reading...

By Momentous Institute | Jul 31, 2017

Every year we try new ways to help our Momentous School students continue to read at home over the summer. We’ve sent home journals, we’ve asked students to bring a report on the first week, we’ve had them write letters to the main character of a book, sing a song about their book and more. Every student is encouraged to participate in summer reading, and we promote it with the students at the end of the school year as well as with their parents. This year I thought I’d try something new and incorporate technology into summer reading.

I found a website called Flipgrid, where students can contribute short videos about anything they want. I made a page just for our school, taught each class of students how to do it, and helped parents download the app to their phone or visit the website on a computer.

On the home page of our school’s account, I listed this prompt in both English and Spanish:  What book have you read lately? What is the book about? What did you like about the book?

So far, about 30 days into summer vacation, we have 67 video submissions. Some students have made several and others just one. You can also see how many views each video gets, and I’m noticing that lots of students are viewing them.

Each video is 90 seconds long. Here are a few of my favorites so far:

 My favorite part of watching these videos has been to see how much the parents have gotten involved with the reading process. I hadn’t really thought about that when I set it up, but it’s been a great surprise! I like seeing the parents asking the students questions about the book and encouraging them to give more information in their book review. It’s been a fun way to get the parents involved that hasn’t been captured in any of our other summer reading projects before.

I love projects like this because I always get a glimpse into what the students are capable of doing. When you do new initiatives, you never know if they’re going to stick. But what I learned is that the students are not only ready for it, but hungry for it. They’re taking the idea and running with it. I can’t wait to ask them all about it when they come back to school in August!