Session 1: YAL Immersion Begins . . .

24 08 2011

Got another tech tool for you! This is one you may not use this semester. But it’s one of the most popular with students ever, so you’ll want to be sure and save it to your Diigo account (more on Diigo later).

Wordle ( creates word clouds or graphic representations of text. Here’s what a word cloud of your reflections on Orientation week look like:

I love creating word clouds from students’ work and using them to do a bit of reflection. The larger the word, the more often it appeared. In this case, I’d say that besides the perfunctory “class” and “week,” we have some interesting large words like “much” and “new” and “technology” and “first” and “writing.” So, yes, there was much new technology to learn and writing to do. Also large is “like” and smaller but good to see is “fun.” Smaller still but encouraging are “excited,” “enjoyed,” and “challenging.”

All in all, I’d say that we all felt challenged a bit, but it was a good kind of challenge. The kind of challenge that Madeline Hunter wrote of:

If you want to feel secure, do what you already know how to do. If you want to be a true professional & continue to grow…go to the cutting edge of your competence, which means a temporary loss of security. So whenever you don’t quite know what you’re doing, know that you are growing.

Now we’re ready to grow a bit in Session 1 when we immerse ourselves in reading Young Adult Literature.


1. Prep for First LIVE Class
2. First YA Book You’ll Read
3. Eva Perry Mock Printz Club’s Short List
4. Diigo Class Group
5. Session 1, Activities/Action Items, Aug. 24 – 30

1. Prep for First LIVE Class

I enjoyed my first personal conference with Michele Tuesday night and look forward to the others in the next few days. We basically run through the Multiple Intelligences that you’ll need to successfully participate in our LIVE classes in the Bookhenge and discuss any questions that you have so far. Please do schedule so we can meet before class on Monday if you’ve not already.

2. First YA Book You’ll Read

You’ll be selecting and reading your first YA book for the class this week. We’re exploring literary quality of YAL so you’ll choose one of the five Printz book honorees to read by class time —

2. Eva Perry Mock Printz Club’s Short List

Friday night, April 26th, I’ll be “locked in” with 25 teenagers at the Eva Perry Library as the Mock Printz Club votes on their top picks that they’ve read so far of the YA titles published in 2012. They’ve read over 300 books so far and the discussions have been lively, so it should be fascinating to see which books rise to the top.

I’ll post the list immediately after I’m released so you can choose your second YA title to read for Session 2.

3. Diigo Class Group

Diigo??? Yes, many Web 2.0 tools have names that sound like they belong in Dr. Seuss books. Every resource that I tweet, I also bookmark for our Bookhenge Diigo Group. In fact, Diigo makes it easy to bookmark and tweet at the same time. As you see resources that I or colleagues or others tweet or that you find elsewhere and want to share with us, please do bookmark them for our group and tweet a heads-up.
Bookhenge Diigo Group —

4. Session 1– Activities/Action Items – Aug. 24 – Aug. 30

(Use the Course of Action link on the wiki to find this session)

Theme: Getting to Know Young Adult Literature

Introduction of three inquiries to be completed over the next few weeks:
• Literary Quality of Young Adult Literature (2012 Printz and Melinda Awards)
• Literature as Exploration (Waves of Change)
• Literature as a Performing Art (Bookcasting)

Essential Question for this Session: What kind of literary quality are we finding in the 2011-2012 Printz books and what are multiple ways to “perform in response to a text?”

Activities and Action Items:
• Complete your personal conference before our Orientation Session in the Bookhenge on Monday, Aug. 29, from 7 to 9 pm.
• Choose a title from the official 2011 ALA Printz Committee honorees to read and then produce and create your first bookcast — a multimedia response to the book. Read this book by our Orientation on Monday, Aug. 29, from 7 to 9 pm. Prepare and post bookcast for this book by Tuesday, Sept. 6, 11:59 pm. Be sure to publish to YouTube and then embed the video in a blog post.
• Participate in the Orientation Session in the Bookhenge on Monday, Aug. 29, from 7 to 9 pm. We’ll learn about bookcasting then.
• Complete your RAP by Tuesday, Aug. 30, 11:59 pm.

Be sure and tweet questions for the good of the class. Enjoy your novel and have a great week!

Teach well, take care of yourself, and keep in touch —




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