Digital Literacy at the TCRWP

As a part of our workshop offerings for teachers in schools that partner with the TCRWP, we’ve been delighted to welcome Heidi Hayes Jacobs, Kristin Ziemke, and Troy Hicks. Both teachers and TCRWP staff developers have been thinking and teaching alongside one another, aiming to determine ways to best make use of digital tools in workshop classrooms to support student growth.

As a part of this endeavor, many of us at the TCRWP are trying out recommended apps and the one we all became excited about recently is Padlet.

Padlet is a free, online virtual wall or bulletin board. In our TCRWP digital think tank we have brainstormed and tried out several different uses for this application. We have used it as a virtual write around during book clubs, whole class grand conversation and other social structures in reading workshop to support 100% active engagement and bring out all voices. Similarly, we have used it as a virtual ‘jot (or parking) lot’ for comments and questions. This led us to the idea that we could also use it as a space to collect students’ writing about reading across time, which provides teachers with a window into student growth so we can look for patterns and trends across student writing about reading. It has also served as a place for kids to ‘buzz about books’ and share book recommendations.

Staff developers have also been using this tool as an easy way to collaborate and share resources with teachers in schools. While it is quite similar to creating a Google folder, there is something especially appealing about the visual layout and bulletin board feeling of Padlet.

These are just a few different uses for the tool that we have tried in classrooms so far. Others have offered additional ideas.