By Vita Broce - Education career student
2020 has been a year full of changes. We have been facing a pandemic, and all jobs have been trying to function online. This is not an exception for teaching. Teaching face-to- face is hard, even though it seems easier because you get to engage with your students in a physical way, it has always been hard to teach. Online school is even harder. There have been so many changes when it comes to online teaching.
Technology is our friend right now. All of us teachers have tried to arrange our classes online and we know that engaging with students online is difficult, but there have been several programs that have made this experience a little easier. Now, let’s jump into teaching Literature.
My experience with 6th graders has been interesting. I have taught them both reading and literary skills, along with books that we have been analyzing. Topics such as “types of heroes”, “types of conflicts”, “genres of literature”, and more, have been the protagonists in my classes.
Literature is so vast that it has a lot to teach and learn. Online literature has been available for over a decade now, going from news articles to novels, which makes it easier to find e-books and give the resources to students. Unless, of course, you choose books that are way too unique. So, Literature can be easy to find on the internet, but how do we teach it? For the new generation teachers, it might be easy, because we are very close to technology; however, to older teachers, online teaching has been a complete challenge.
No worries though! This podcast will give you tools to teach literature online! As it was mentioned before, online teaching might be tricky, but it is not impossible. The first thing that I want to focus on is the following:
- As a teacher, it is not your fault if your students are not engaging completely, you are doing your best!
The second thing to be focused on is:
- How to find the tools that might make your classes even more
There are many tools that can be used. We are going to present four tools that can be useful to teach Literature and create personal work. We will divide these in school levels:
- For K-5 grades, we have StoryBird,
- For Middle School, we have StoryJumper,
- For High Schoolers, we have Wattpad,
- For College, we have
Let’s start with StoryBird. It is a tool that helps teach Literature to kids form K-
- It has several usages, and you can either use the stories that are published or do one yourself! The platform is very user-friendly, and it even has the option to create a class in which you can assign short-stories, poems, comics and more. StoryBird has tons of creative stories, and it counts with challenges that students can compete on with their own stories and arts.
Next, we have StoryJumper. StoryJumper can be used with K-5 students and also middle schoolers. It is similar to StoryBird, but it has a feature that can help engage and hook your students into a better story telling. Story Jumper has the option of creating characters, like avatars, and also to do a voiceover of stories you make. This feature is free, but major times of recording will need to be paid. This tool has helped me engage and have fun with stories that my students create.
Now, for high schoolers! This “audience” is different. They are not very hooked up with the idea of creating books or stories with pictures. They want to be seen as “more grownups”, even if they are not. That is why Wattpad is a good place for them to create stories. This tool can be used to read and to create. By creating, they can publish their work, or have it private. Either way, you, as a teacher, can correct by placing comments on a specific part of the text. It is a great way to give your students the liberty of creating their own world.
Last, but not least, we have Medium. This is for college students. You may ask, why? Medium is a tool that helps you create articles, short stories, and opinions. It has a lot of content that can contain different standpoints in several topics, such as politics, book reviews and more. It also has the option of creating your own content and publish it.
So! Here are some options that can be used for Literature teaching. Hang in there! It is possible!