Barnes & - Image Viewer: Reading and Learning to Read, by Jo Anne L. Vacca, Hardcover

I’ve been working with Dr. Lisa Lenhart for about 6 years at the University of Akron. She gave me a start as a graduate assistant back in the 2004-2005 school year, as I was working on my principal’s license, and I’ve hung around ever since. Lisa has opened up a lot of doors for me, and I have the utmost respect for her as an educator, a professional and a person. She’s currently working on revising one of her textbooks, Reading and Learning to Read, and I received the following email from her about a week ago.

Would any of you be willing to ask your kids these questions and give me their quotes back? I’m working on my book revision and we’re going to put student voices in……..I won’t use their names. Any responses at all would help. Thank you so much,

How does (or did) your teacher teach you to read?

List three things you know about good readers.

What do you dislike about reading in school?

Tell me about a time someone had to read out loud and they weren’t very good…..

If you could be in charge, what would you use to teach kids to read?

Read the rest of this entry…


App Title: iTouchiLearn Words

Grade Level: Pre-K, Kinderbound, Kindergarten

Cost: $0.99

Developer Website:

iTunes Link: Click Here


A student’s knowledge of word meanings, or oral vocabulary, plays a key role in reading comprehension. The iTouchiLearn Words app for iPhone and iPod Touch provides young learners with an opportunity to engage in vocabulary building practice. Developed by Staytoooned, the cover screen indicates that the app is designed to “learn words through entertaining animations.”

Read the rest of this entry…


As a TumbleBooks subscriber, I recently received an email announcing the launch of a BETA TumblePad 2.0 downloadable ebook reader for PC and Mac. This presents an interesting opportunity for teachers who have computers or laptops in their classrooms, but not internet access. This is actually the case in some of the Head Start classrooms that are part of the Akron Ready Steps program that I work closely with. I spent some time this morning the downloadable e-Book reader for Mac and thought I’d share some highlights and thoughts about this product with my Raised Digital readers. You’ll need to click on the images to view them at full-size.

  • Installation is pretty straightforward.

InstallTumblePad 2

Michelle Russell

Reading Comprehension App

Posted by Michelle Russell on March 17, 2010 at 8:09pmSend Message View Discussions

I am looking for an iPod app for 2nd-5th grade that is like Raz Kids. Reads a story with words on screen, and then asks questions (Comprehension)
Any ideas?
(We do have a subscription to Reading A-Z and they do have apps, but the story are not read.)
We are looking to us iPod Touches as part of a Reading Intervention with some students who have difficulties with reading comprehension

Read the rest of this entry…


First eBook on iPad video I’ve run across. I’m wondering if these devices will be big in early elementary education. All of the criticism of the iPad for being media consuming devices rather than media creation devices might be warranted, but this type of eBook application certainly seems to hold some promise in the area of early reading instruction.

Posted via web from brueckj23’s posterous


Friday November 13, 17.37.39

For the past year, Dr. Kathleen Roskos from John Carroll University, Dr. Karen Burstein, Director of the Southwest Institute for Families and Children and I have been researching use of eBooks with early literacy learners. Most recently, our team has started a study that will look at instructional interactions with eBooks that promote early literacy development and vocabulary. After viewing the David Merrill TED video and blogging about it in this post, I began to consider how our research team might incorporate these devices as part of our work. I was so excited about this possibility that I decided to email the Sifteo team to see if they might be open to collaborating with us on research in the future.

Read the rest of this entry…



From the “Will Richardson always makes me think file,” I found this quote from one of his latest Weblogg-ed posts, New Reading, New Writing, to really set the wheels in motion.

Is social reading and social writing in our kids’s futures? I don’t think there is much doubt about that. More and more I’m finding Diigo annotations and notes cropping up on the articles and essays that I read, and by and large I’ve found the commentors to be serious, thoughtful and articulate.

Much like Mr. Richardson points out, I’ve been finding Diigo annotations more and more myself since I started using the Diigo toolbar for Firefox. When I read that quote initially, it had me thinking about how Diigo might look in a classroom environment. I guess I was thinking more of a 1-on-1 environment. However, upon further reflection, I don’t think that would be the best way to integrate Diigo.

Why, you ask? To me, Diigo is a tool that you use during those quiet, reflective times. Alone to your work, Diigo is there to help you push that bright yellow highlighter across digital text, rather than the thin pages of a paperback. You don’t really use Diigo with a crowd. You use it during “me” time, when you’re in a reflective mood and capable to be attentive and think critically about what you are reading. For most students, I don’t think that type of “me” time happens very often during the 6-8 hours that they are cramped in a classroom desk with 30 other kids around them. So when and how would a student use Diigo?

Read the rest of this entry…



An interesting Op Ed piece appeared in The New York Times today titled, Reading Test Dummies. The author is E. D. Hirsch Jr., who is best known for his work in the area of cultural literacy. Dr. Hirsch has written several books, his most recent being The Knowledge Deficit (2006). He also is the founder of the Core Knowledge Foundation, a non-profit research organization.

Hirsch prefaces his piece by pulling an Obama quote from a recent speech on education reform. Specifically, the one where the President calls for children to have the skill set to do more than just fill in bubbles on Scan-tron sheets. Hirsch then takes a minute to make a case that standardized tests aren’t all bad, but rather the U.S. educational system takes the wrong approach, indicating that children are often asked to read passages that are not “knowledge neutral” and given randomly to students with out a context.
Children are asked to read and then answer multiple-choice questions about such topics as taking a hike in the Appalachians even though they’ve never left the sidewalks of New York, nor studied the Appalachians in school.




This is a personal blog. The resources, information and views presented on Raised Digital are solely the opinion of Jeremy S. Brueck, and are not meant to reflect the views of my employer.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.