I teach at an arts-integration magnet school where I see each class, grades K-5, once per week for a 40-minute lesson. In the library setting, instruction is focused on literacy, research, and technology skills.
My students are enthusiastic, imaginative, and innovative.
These young learners thrive in an environment where they are invited to explore, create, and express themselves artistically. They also strive to learn, collaborate, and share information via technology.
Students attending my school represent a wide range of socioeconomic backgrounds and cultures. The diversity of the student population is reflected in the library collection and embraced in the collaborative nature of the lessons that are experienced.
Whisper phones are tools that allow students to vocalize as they read without causing a distraction for other students. Each week when students come to library class, they are given approximately 15 minutes for browsing, checking out, and reading library books. As you can imagine, the sound of 20 children reading to themselves simultaneously can make it difficult for some to focus.
Emergent readers often need to vocalize as they sound out words and work through texts.
They also interact with books in a wonderful way, commenting about interesting things that are happening in the story or personal connections they may have. I want to encourage these behaviors, as they lead to fluency and life-long reading. However, I also want to foster an environment in which all readers can concentrate on their individual texts.
I am asking for enough whisper phones to create a class set for the primary grades I teach, so that each student can have one. My hope is that the whisper phones will lower distractions, enabling young readers to focus on and enjoy their books in the library.
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