Wednesday, June 13, 2012

One Book to Connect the World

I read this title and immediately thought that from what I have been learning in just a couple short weeks that this idea isn’t only possible but actually probably not to hard either.  Sharing books in a club is no new idea, but sharing a book globally actual was until Pernille Ripp thought about uniting kids globally. Her thought was even though they do not speak the same language they would share the same feelings and reflections. She began with Twitter, sending out the idea to the world and within minutes received twits back on how to sign up.   These simple ideas lead to the creation of the Global Read Aloud Blog.   To make this thought a reality she incorporated different technologies and set up a lesson plan over a four week period introducing small pieces of technology at a time with reading in-between.  First step was to set up a Blog using and teach her kids how to use it responsibly.  Once it was up and running she used Twitter to promote it using a hashtag and through wiki.  The results were immediate and endearing!

When thinking about lesson planning and teaching I always seem to revert back to the ways in which I was taught.  As I have begun this journey to become a teacher I am learning everyday how technology has changed the face of education forever.  Where kids cannot only communicate with other children from around the world but can share in an experience that will stay with them forever.  Technology is not only helping us teach a certain subject matter but also expanding those lessons to other areas.  Through this idea, her kids had the opportunity to learn about new technologies at the same time learn about kids and areas from around the world.  They tracked their connections on google earth and made their classroom and the world a little bit smaller.  It brought them together as a community and triggered and eagerness to learn and share!  Taking advantage of tools such as these one can immediately see the advantages and I believe more will follow her footsteps in other educational areas.  As a future teacher if I can build that type of community and desire to learn anything can be possible!

The experience that this brought to her students exemplifies NETS standard number 1 where they demonstrated creative thinking and developed an innovative process using technology.  They created original works expressing group and personal expression all while reading a book.  Since some groups were further ahead than others they even were able to see trends in reading expressions and hear about how other kids were interpreting the story.

Ripp, Pernille (2011-2012). One Book to Connect the World.  Learning and Leading with Technology, 39(4) 32.

Retrieved from


  1. Wow, this teacher must have spent a lot of time on Global Read Aloud Blog and other projects. I'm glad that students have the opportunity to connect with others in various corners of the world. I think they felt good to share ideas and were able to increase their understanding of each other.

    This project reminds me of a book I read long time ago when we didn't have Web 2.0. The authors had their students use e-mail to connect with students in South Africa. Both sides shared their ideas on political and societal issues. The US students developed a deeper understanding of the history and political conflicts in South Africa. However, they were also observed to show little interest in things happening around them, in their school and neighborhoods. I found it ironic. What gets reinforced by technology, and what gets reduced?


  2. Hi Tony,

    This article captures my attention as well. I'm still blown away that children can learn with/from other children all over the world - in the comfort of their own classroom. Last week, I read an article about Fan Fiction websites for children that had a very similar theme to this article. The author described her reasoning and methods for making the Fan Fiction site, including wanting children to reach out to their peers and get feedback from people they didn't know. I think this is a great idea, because it (hopefully) gets children to start realizing just how big our world is and that different cultures, lifestyles and opinions exist far beyond the realms of where our students live and go to school- at least, this would be my approach as a teacher for my own global interactive site.