By Angela Holleran
I teach at a small rural school in Victoria, Australia. The school has 35 students, divided into two classes: Foundation to Year 2 (aged 5 to 8) and Year 3 to Year 6 (aged 8 to 12)—at present, I teach in the younger classroom.
“It has helped to engage all of our students with reading in a number of ways, all of which make them want to read.”
Our school values are respect, citizenship, learning and success, with lifelong learning as our central focus, and we seek to use 21st century learning approaches and support our students in maintaining these values, while helping them to connect, communicate, collaborate and be creative in problem solving.
Whooo’s Reading fits neatly into our plans for teaching our students to be future ready and prepared. I have used this program for 3 months now, and am impressed with the way my students have responded. It has helped to engage all of our students with reading in a number of ways, all of which make them want to read.
1. It’s easy to use.
2. It only takes a short amount of time to complete each day.
3. The owls are appealing and they enjoy dressing them up.
4. They earn coins each time they log their reading time, review a book, or complete a response.
5. Coins are also earned by liking other student comments and commenting on each other’s books (they really love to do this for each other).
6. They can talk online to each other about their books. This is almost always the first question asked by the upper primary class aged 8 to 12.
7. I can give them a score and feedback about their reading responses.
8. They compete against each other to move up the levels. For some students this is a really effective motivator.
9. They can see their books listed on the site with the Lexile level, which helps me and them.
10. They can see their personal graphs with data and compete against the other classes.
11. The Principal can see what they’re reading, helping build our school reading community.