Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Online book sources

So we all know that books are totally awesome and there is NO BETTER way to enjoy a book than curled up with someone who loves you reading to you.  But let me tell you, there are some completely awesome online reading sources that you can use, if that someone you love has a sore throat and can't read, or is away on a business trip...  Here are a couple of my favorites.  The first one is Tumblebooks. Tumblebooks is available through our district webpage and is on the learning tools for kids menu.  There are BUNCHES of books available, some are popular titles that you'll recognize (like Mercy Watson by Kate DiCamillo and How I Became a Pirate by David Shannon) as well as other less familiar titles.  The narration is good and what's really great about it is as the text is read, the sentences light up, allowing struggling readers the opportunity to connect the text to the spoken word.  That's really important for developing readers.  

The second one is called Storyline Online. This one is sponsored by the screen actors guild (SAG) and when you listen the stories, you can hear why these people make their living acting because they are completely amazing!  We've been watching one this week called "I Need My Monster" by Amanda Knoll.  It's read by Rita Moreno (who I remember from West Side Story AND the Electric Company, but I'm pretty old).  She is a completely gifted actress and in this story, she reads about different monsters who are trying to get a job scaring a kid into bed at night.  Each monster has different sounds and accents. It's spectacular. Watch it here.
The third website for books is called We Give books. This terrific website is all about getting books in kids' hands and to that end, they have this website where there are lots of beautiful fiction and non fiction books posted.  You do have to sign up (it's free, but you have to give your email address) and I liked that it allows you to make the books go full screen (I was viewing a non fiction book about the ocean and the pictures really knocked me out).  The only big disadvantage is that it doesn't read to you.

So, haul out your computers and start reading!

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