Technology in the world of Elementary Literacy

What I didn’t know until I came upon Ben Rimes’s blog (  was how  ‘March is Reading month’ was being celebrated in schools across the US. ‘ Read around the Planet’ is one such program that is part of this great celebration. Who would have thought, even as recently as five years back, about the importance of technology in classrooms. When I hear the word technology  I think of Silicon Valley, definitely not a classroom. But times have changed and technology has now become an essential element in the elementary classroom.

What makes this program,’Read around the Planet’ so interesting is that it connects students from not just schools across North America but also Europe. Students get to share their love of literacy via video conferences across the world with other students. And all this at elementary level!

I think this is an absolutely brilliant idea to incorporate in the classroom. Not only does it involve technology, it also gets the students excited about using this technology to connect with their peers across the globe. It allows students to share their love of reading, writing with other students from other schools. This medium not only encourages the technology being used, it also serves as a social platform for students to interact. Students will learn the etiquette needed in conducting an online ( F2F or virtual) meeting. They will know how and when to ask questions. Students will learn about different cultures and habits via this medium.

Instead of having just an individual reading log in the class, sharing a log with another class in a different part of the world would be a great tool to promote literacy in your own classroom. Maybe starting on a smaller scale like participating in the ‘Read across America’ program might be a possible idea. It still involves the use of technology, via video conferences, and also enables student interaction with peers.


4 thoughts on “Technology in the world of Elementary Literacy

  1. I think it’s so interesting when teachers and schools allow their students to connect and interact with students and others in other countries. It’s amazing how much you can relate to others who are in a completely different country than you! It takes ‘penpal’ to a whole other level! 🙂
    I love your idea of having the students starting smaller with the example of Read Across America. It could even be started smaller from there such as blogging/sharing their reading with students across the same county or even the same school. We know students interact with one another at the same school, but rarely do they talk about books they read and different things they are learning in class. The conversations I usually hear are about what they do outside of school. Even if they do talk about their learning, it’s usually with their friends that share the same interests as them. There’s just such a great amount of things you can do just with the students within your school and county, let alone all the students in the same country!!

  2. Great ideas! I hope you get the chance to implement them one day. I especially like how you are using these as tools to enhance the students’ learning. That ‘Read Around the Planet’ is a pretty cool idea huh? I just learned about it too.
    🙂 Melissa

  3. I have never heard about ‘Read Around the Planet’ before but I love the idea of interacting with students from all over the world. I have had the opportunity to skype with a teacher in another state and it was so fun! I think that this be an awesome way of showing kids that reading and literacy in general is important throughout the world. I look forward to doing this with my future students!

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