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Kindle Project Update: Classics, library mirroring, and more

Stock-Kindlefavicon The State of the Kindle Project is strong! Here’s an update.

1. We’ve more than tripled the number of Kindles in the classroom. I started the year with three Kindles for student use. Now there are 10. And one is coming tomorrow! (Thank you, Angela!) I am appreciative of all the donations.

Our current Kindle inventory consists of the following:

  • 1 Kindle 1
  • 2 Kindle 2s
  • 5 Kindle Keyboards
  • 1 Kindle Touch
  • 1 Kindle, Latest Generation

2. Our e-book library has tripled. In September, I had 30 books on the Kindles. Now there are 97. By next week, we’ll hit the 100 mark. More important than the number, however, is the quality of the books. I want books on these Kindles that students want to read.

Here are some books added in the last two weeks:

  • Thirteen Reasons Why, by Jay Asher
  • The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak
  • Zeitoun, by Dave Eggers
  • Lockdown, by Walter Dean Myers
  • Looking for Alaska, by John Green
  • A Visit from the Goon Squad, by Jennifer Egan
  • Along for the Ride, by Sarah Dessen

I’m still trying to figure out the best way to encourage e-book donations. Maybe I’ll set up an Amazon Wishlist (though nobody likes those) or a donation button on the sidebar. Who knows. (I decided to go with the sidebar. Check it out!)

What’s neat, though, is that my “library mirroring” vision has begun. I want students to be able to browse our classroom’s physical library and then be able to read the book on their Kindle. It’ll take time, but my goal is for the physical and electronic libraries to sync, to match up perfectly.

3. Students are reading, asking for books, and choosing classics. Opponents of voluntary reading say students don’t challenge themselves with rigorous texts. I don’t find that argument convincing.

First, it’s not true. Last week, one student started reading Animal Farm. Yesterday, another student got into Things Fall Apart. If we give students choice, they choose what’s right for them.

Second, even if it were true, it doesn’t matter. Voluminous reading is what matters most. For my students (and most young people), whose reading is minimal, quantity is much more important than quality, whatever that means. Before getting nervous that our students aren’t reading Dickens, let’s get 30-40 books under their belts.

* * *

Next steps for the Kindle Project:

  • Reach 15 Kindles by the end of March.
  • Reach 150 e-books by the end of March.
  • Develop strategy to get to 25 Kindles (a class set) by September.
Thank you so much for your support. Please let me know if you have ideas! favicon

Please share your brilliant insights!