Spring is in the Air—and Summer is Close Behind

Written by the Kurzweil Blog Team

            Summer is a time for play and relaxation—and thereís no better way to relax than curled up with a good book. How can you ensure your students will get their much needed reading time during the summer months? Make it easy and fun.

Make it Easy to Read with Free eBooks Online

There are thousands upon thousands of free eBooks available to anyone, and accessible to everyone with Kurzweil 3000. Finding these books can be cumbersome, unless you know where to look. Here is a list of our favorites that will help your students avoid the summer slide.

  • International Childrenís Digital Library (ICDL)
    The ICDL offers free eBooks for all ages and from a variety of cultures, which is especially important for English Language Learners. Check out the Featured Book List from the ICDL to get started.
  • ManyBooks
    Choose from a list of 10 most recent downloads, or base your decision on recent book reviews. These are just 2 of the many ways free eBooks from ManyBooks makes it easy to find what you are looking for (even when you arenít sure what that is).
  • Feedbooks
    A very simple navigation for any genre you can think of makes for easy browsing free eBooks on the Feedbooks public domain pages. The only caveat is deciding where to start—The Harvard Classics Shelf of Fiction or Science Fiction.
  • Project Gutenberg
    As one of the original free eBook aggregators, Project Gutenberg has a very large list to choose from. If youíre not in the mood for something a little different, check out their latest project The Self-Publishing Press.
  • CK-12
    The multitude of educational videos on CK-12 is a great solution for kids who want a break from reading. Send them on a virtual Earth Science field trip on a rainy day.
  • FreeKidsBooks.org
    With books for ages ranging from toddler to young adult, this kid-friendly site makes finding a new book both fun and simple. Kids can either read the book online, or download a PDF to have it read to them in Kurzweil 3000.
            Tip:firefly—PDF and EPUB files included.

Make it Fun by Turning Reading into Play

Here are a few recommendations on how to motivate students to read—and read a lot—during the summer break. Implement one or a few in your classroom to appeal to various social and learning styles.

  • Summer Book Club: Help students organize a book club before the end of the school year. They can hold their discussions in person or online with WhatsApp or Google Hangout.
  • Summertime Reading Events: Work with your PTO or local library to host summer reading events. Bring Kurzweil 3000 up on the screen to have everyone follow along.
  • Create a Digital Scavenger Hunt or WebQuest: Have students look for clues within books or find and read books based on the hunt. Learn how by reading this blog.
  • Give Reading a Purpose: Have students collect donations for every page they read—or leverage usage reporting in firefly to track time spent reading. Have your class vote on which charity to give the proceeds to.

     

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