Kathy Parker, school librarian for 33 years for Seneca (IL) Grade School, is active on Twitter (@MariansLibrary) and reads on a Kindle—and now so do many of her seventh and eighth graders who use the Amazon Kindle in a language arts program she helped launch last year.
The school bought six Kindles in 2009 and downloaded some titles that summer.
' By the fall, seventh and eighth graders were sharing 18 devices and reading novels, ranging from Gary Schmidt's The Wednesday Wars (Clarion, 2007) to Lisa Graff's The Things About Georgie (HarperCollins, 2007), for class assignments. Within six months, older students were bringing the devices home.
The pilot program, which cost about $2,800, proved so successful that after a presentation to the Board of Education in December, Seneca CCSD 170 Superintendent Eric Misener helped secure funds to buy Kindles for every eighth-grade student, along with enough devices for one seventh-grade class to use this year. '
The article cites support from Twitter followers like Will DeLameter who runs the Edukindle website. He alerted others, including M-Edge Accessories, which is donating covers for all the Kindles.
Parker pointed out that her budget takes into account that each book can be downloaded onto up to six devices for the cost of the one book.
' She says it's well worth the investment as she's seen firsthand how students respond to being able to change fonts, using the text-to-speech feature, and even having the devices display what percentage of the book they've completed.
"The bottom line for me is the Kindles have generated a love of reading among those students who would not have otherwise picked up a book," she says. '
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