The month of January was a quick one. The Christmas donation rush is definitely over, but I’m still very pleased by the following updates at the Kindle Classroom Project.
1. The first class set of Kindles is complete!
Just a little more than a week ago, there were 25 Kindles in the collection. Now there are 30. This means that every single student in my Oakland classroom now has access to a Kindle.
The students have been more than appreciative. “You got more?” Cristina asked last Thursday when I brought the new Kindles. An avid reader who prefers physical books, Cristina has long resisted reading on a Kindle. “Maybe I’ll try it,” she said. Though I don’t force students to make the switch (I’m not against physical books! Really, I’m not!), most ninth graders like the features (e.g., convenience, built-in dictionary) that come with the Kindle.
So one classroom’s done. What next? When I began this little hobby a couple years ago, I never thought I would have to ask this question. But I think it’s time to expand the Kindle Classroom Project to more students. The next classroom, if everything works out, will likely be back in San Francisco, where I taught for 12 years.
2. Generous donors continue to donate to the project.
Life is good when you receive an email from someone you’ve never met and the person says she would like to donate multiple new Kindles. That’s exactly what happened last week. Tori from Cary, North Carolina contributed not one, not two, but three Kindles to the collection.
They’re new, they’re small, they’re sleek, and the students love them. Tucked into and protected by colorful and affordable iPearl mCover cases, the Kindles strip away any unnecessary feature that may distract students from reading. Yes, these are high-tech devices, but the best thing about Kindles is that they are dedicated to keep students in the reading zone. Thank you again, Toni!
I also received donations this week from Alisa in Phoenix and Lisa in San Francisco. A few years ago, I contacted Alisa, a professor of English, because I was impressed with how she used technology to engage her students. She maintains several blogs, including FreshmanComp.com. We soon followed each other on Twitter, and I have appreciated that she is part of my personal learning network. Now I’m very pleased that she donated her beloved Kindle Keyboard and handome red case, complete with built-in light. I haven’t yet officially checked out Alisa’s Kindle, but I’m afraid that there will be intense competition. Wish me luck, and thank you, Alisa!
After Toni and Alisa’s donations, the number of Kindles stood at 29. My friend Lisa’s new Kindle, which arrived just a few days ago, completed the class set. Lisa and I met in high school and enjoy following the vagaries of our respective San Francisco neighborhoods. One day on Facebook, she sent a message to share that she wanted to donate a Kindle. Why is everyone so kind? Thank you, Lisa!
3. More Kindles are coming this week!
Stay tuned. The shipment of 10 Kindles (from the DonorsChoose project a couple months ago) will finally be unboxed this week. I can’t wait to show the box to some of the students and to see their reactions when they open it up!
+ The second Kindle classroom
+ How many Kindles will people donate in 2013?
+ When will the Kindle e-book library go over 200 titles?
Let me know if you have thoughts, questions, or concerns!