Monthly Archives: April 2013

Teaching the Language Arts Authors Present at IRA

Denise Johnson, with Linda Eleftheri, presented Collaborative Digital Writing Through Online Storytelling at the technology preconference institute. The presentation focused on the ways digital tools can provide ways to design instruction that supports and extends students’ writing achievement. Promoting collaborative, multimodal digital writing can be done through several free, online storytelling platforms that bridge the gap between what counts as writing in the real world and in the classroom. For more information about the presentation, see Denise and Linda’s wiki at

DeVere Wolsey presented an interactive session at preconference institute organized by Kathy Ganske: Making a Difference through Writing. Participants explored two aspects of working in digital environments: How to work with digital sources to inform their writing and how to bring together digital images and composing processes, as means for increasing language learning. Participants learned how to use online tools their students can employ to draw or reuse images found on the Internet in service of writing as a means of learning. Examples of digital stories that combine images and words were provided, and participants with computers or smartphones had the opportunity to try some of the tools. By linking the parts of the brain that process images with those parts that process language, written work improves and so does student learning. Visit this link to view the presentation slides and resources from DeVere’s presentation.  This description is cross posted at Literacy Beat blog at

Elizabeth Dobler, along with Lotta Larson, presented a session at the IRA conference entitled e-Books and Common Core Standards: The Flexible Nature of Digital Reading. Information was shared about the ways e-books can be used to meet the Common Core ELA Standards while differentiating reading instruction to meet the needs of individual learners. Specific examples from multiple case-studies in K-8 classrooms exemplified how digital reader tools and e-book design features can successfully be used to meet individual standards. Issues of text complexity were discussed and participants had an opportunity to view an assessment instrument to evaluate the quality and instructional potential of various e-books and digital readers.  Visit this link to view Elizabeth and Lotta’s presentation slides and the handouts at

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How-To Videos for Instructors – Helping You Help Your Students

By now, we hope that you have access to a copy of the multimedia digital book Teaching the Language Arts: Forward Thinking in Tomorrow’s Classrooms. If not, please click here to get access to a review copy.

Now that you have the book, it is time to learn how to use the plethora of tools, technology, and multimedia offered throughout the book.

To help you use the book like an expert, we have produced short How-To videos for instructors (separate videos are available for your students).

How-To Video for iPads

How-To Video for PCs & Laptops

Be sure to watch one or both of the videos, depending on the device or devices on which you will be using the book. These videos will help you help your students get the most out of this fantastic new book!

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