I advise an award-winning robotics program at a middle school. My husband once described the robotics program like this: “It’s exactly like The Karate Kid, only with robots instead of karate.” He was being facetious, but when I think about it, he may have been onto something.
Like the protagonist in the movie, my students are underdogs.
They live in the community of City Heights, a diverse, high-poverty, and crime-ridden area. All of my students qualify for the free/reduced-price lunch program. They have to contend with many barriers and obstacles including unequal access to resources. Moreover, they all share a thirst for learning about technology, specifically engineering and robotics.
There's a school wide effort to increase reading across the board by implementing a 30 minute daily reading period called DEAR (Drop Everything And Read).
Many of my students come into my classes one or more reading levels below their grade level.I want to help remedy this problem at my school, one advisory period at a time.
Right now, the kids check out physical books from our school library, which is fine and good (I love paper books). However, due to the students' limited reading skills, reading these books by themselves can be difficult for them. Students cannot pronounce words correctly or know what the words mean unless they stop and physically ask me the definition of the word or look it up themselves in a dictionary. When there are interruptions such as these it's hard to lose yourself in the story.
I own a kindle and love my e-reader and see its potential to improve my students' reading skills. I love that it's lightweight and easy to hold with one hand. I enjoy the fact that I don't have distractions due to interruptions to email, text messages or social media. There are accessibility options to increase the size of the font of the e-books or have the book read aloud to you.
The school library has limitations on class sets of texts to loan out but I can download an e-book to all the kindles and we can immediately read a story or STEM related article together. I can show the students how to highlight and add notes to their reading, as well as how to use the word-wise and dictionary features. I predict that having the kindles will make reading even more enjoyable for the students and in turn, help raise their reading abilities
All-new Kindle - Now with a Built-in Front Light - Black - Includes Special Offers
• Amazon Business
TiMOVO Case Compatible for All-New Kindle (10th Generation, 2019 Release), Shock-Absorption Smart Cover Shell with Auto Wake/Sleep, Will Not Fit Kindle Paperwhite or Kindle 8th Gen - Black
• Amazon Business
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