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Salem Community Patriot September 2, 2011 - 7

Making the Grade: Tips to Help Prepare Young Readers Heading Back-to-School

your child’s favorite summer activity? Who was the most memorable person your child met and why? Help your child write down these memories and add illustrations to move the story along. * Have your child become a pen pal with a special summer friend or long- distance relative. Supply them with stationary and envelopes, postcards, postage stamps, an address book and a box for saving letters.

* Use the Internet to promote

interactive learning. Children reading online develop critical thinking and research skills. Start a Web search for favorite book titles or authors. Conduct a search for your child’s favorite music videos.

* Read aloud to your children. Choose a favorite place and special time. Try using different voices for each character.

* Create a reading nook or out-of- As summer winds down and children begin a new school year,

research shows that families play an important role in children’s reading success. Parents can help their children build on important classroom skills with reading and writing activities that nourish young minds.

Here are a few tips from Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) and the Buddig Be A Reader campaign sure to get your young students on the right back-to-school track: * Play word games associated with things in the classroom. Use

your child’s back-to-school shopping list to prompt ideas. * Establish a family reading hour. Set a time after school and on weekends when everyone in the family devotes an hour to reading. * Make up your own story together and write it down. What was

the-way special place where your child can read without being disturbed.

* Put up some poster board to create your own word wall. Use this to share comments on favorite books and to tackle problem words your child may be having trouble reading. * Visit for games and reading ac-

tivities and a chance to win fun back-to-school prizes. Prizes include a Scholastic book library and a Buddig backpack filled with school supplies. Weekly winners will be chosen through a random drawing to receive an age-appropriate book. Carl Buddig & Company - the lunchmeat brand that has been nourishing families for generations - is nourishing young minds through a partnership with RIF to raise a minimum of $100,000 for children’s literacy programs. During the yearlong Be A Reader cam-

Technology Becoming the Top Learning Tool in Classrooms

learning at more advanced levels. For example, your child’s newest book report may skip using paper altogether. With a few quick clicks, books can be downloaded to her e-reader, which she’ll read on the bus, while in between school and her extracurricular activities and at night before crawl- ing into bed. Once the book is finished, she can type her report on her laptop computer, email it to her teacher and, if neces- sary, present it to her class using a computer slideshow presenta- tion on the classroom interactive whiteboard. For young elementary students, the success of computer games like Number Munchers has exploded. Now children can learn spelling, basic math, science, history, geom- etry and even art through online games in both the classroom and at home.

At the higher grade levels, some Gone are the days where a teacher stood at the chalkboard - her

back to the classroom - demonstrating a math equation. Technol- ogy has taken over elementary, middle and high schools across the country, allowing teachers to interact with and educate students in a more hands-on way. The typical school classroom has interactive whiteboards, comput- ers, laptops, calculators and even video games. Nearly 85 percent of teachers feel that in order for their students to succeed in school, they need to have a general understanding of the latest technology, according to an IPSOS poll taken for Duracell. This is because once students leave the school setting, they’re going to be using technol- ogy in college, jobs and everyday life. In fact, survey results have shown that children prefer to learn with the assistance of technology. Keeping all of this technology running on full power, both at home and school, are Duracell CopperTop batteries - the No. 1 bat- tery brand trusted by teachers. Duracell also has an array of products available to make sure your child has enough power as they go through the school year working on their e-reader, laptop, advanced graphic calculator or even smartphone. Technology is taking learning to a new level, and as it continues to improve, your children will be incorporating technology into their

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teachers are designing projects completely developed around online research, which students conduct on laptops, smartphones and other mini computers. These projects allow students to properly cite their sources and develop skills in finding quality reference material online. The technology interest goes

beyond the traditional classroom setting. Gym teachers are turning to physically active video games like Dance Dance Revolution to get children working on balance, coordination and aerobic movements. Since many students are already playing the physical games at home on their gaming systems, it’s helped make gym class more exciting.

Excitement, learning and more interaction are just a few of the reasons parents and teachers are finding success with incorporating technology into the classroom. And as it develops, you can just imagine the educational journeys students will take with new technology tools.

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