June 15, 2018

How to make an interactive reading activity (PART 1)

I'm back. After almost 2 years away from the blog, here I am again. 

I'd like to share a few tools you can use to make a reading text INTERACTIVE.

This post started with a genuine need. When I work with small groups (up to 30 people), I like creating reading activities on Google Docs and use the comments feature to have students answer questions and/or add their reflections (Click HERE for an example in Portuguese). However, this last year, I had to work with teachers all over Brazil and instead of 30 people interacting, I had more than 500 teachers in one asynchronous reading activity. The result was that despite instructing teacher/students to click on the comment in order to see the RESPONDER/REPLY box, more often than not they clicked RESOLVER/SOLVE deleting the original comment or question I had posted. Having said that, you can imagine the hassle to restore everything that had been deleted daily. 

This is an example of technology that works perfectly in one context, but not necessarily in another. As I didn't know other alternatives that could solve my problem, I asked my PLN (via Facebook) for help and they promptly came to my aid.

These are the tools they've recommended:

During the next few weeks, I'll be posting my explorations with each of the tools.

Let's start with ...

ACTIVE TEXTBOOK - https://activetextbook.com/ 

So far, it's my favourite one for what I needed. Apart from COMMENT THREADS, you can add several features to your text, such as highlights, videos, songs, text, images and quizzes. With the free plan, you get 50 MB storage and unlimited access to library. 

FEATURES I'VE ADDED TO THE TEXT: comment threads, image, highlights and a video.


Would you like to try it out with us?

Click HERE to go to this activity on Active Textbook and feel free to leave your contributions (look for the speech bubbles which I've added to the text). Then, I'd love to hear what you thought about the tool.

Before I finish, let me thank all teachers who have kindly contributed to this post with their wonderful ideas.

I'm truly happy to be see Life Feast come to life again and hope you are too.

P.S. I still love Google Docs.

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