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Students explain Global Read Aloud at OSBA fair

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JOSHUA A.BICKEL/THISWEEKNEWS
Asbury Elementary School teacher Rachel Owens and fourth-graders Ryan Adkins, Jamie Bernthold, Dajuana Mason and Abby Holdren explained the Global Read Aloud program at a Student Achievement Fair Nov. 12 that was part of the annual Ohio School Boards Association Capital Conference. The students used Google Chromebooks to participate in the online program.
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By ThisWeek Community News  • 

Groveport Madison students showed off their Cruiser Pride as they presented their selected innovation in education program at a Student Achievement Fair in Columbus Nov. 12.

The Student Achievement Fair was part of the Ohio School Boards Association annual Capital Conference, held in Columbus Nov. 10-13.

Groveport Madison's participation in Global Read Aloud was among 100 programs highlighted at the fair.

They were chosen based on creativity and their positive impact on student achievement.

Asbury Elementary School teacher Rachel Owens and four of her fourth-grade students, Jamie Bernthold and Dajuana Mason, Ryan Adkins and Abby Holdren, explained the program at the conference.

The Global Read Aloud is an online project created in 2010 by Pernille Ripp, a fifth-grade teacher in Middleton, Wis. According to the project website, "The premise is simple; we pick a book to read aloud to our students during a set six-week period and during that time we try to make as many global connections as possible."

This year, the book was Out of My Mind, by Ohio author Sharon Draper, which students were to read between Oct. 30 and Nov. 8.

This is the second year that Groveport Madison students participated in the Global Read Aloud.

Owens said students have been able to expand their educational boundaries beyond their own classroom, using Google Chromebook computers and social media and Internet tools such as Twitter, Kidblog and Skype.

Kidblog is an online site that allows teachers a way to provide students with individual blogs through which they can publish their work and participate in discussions within a secure classroom community.

According to the Kidblog website, teachers maintain complete control over student blogs and user accounts.

"Since beginning using Kidblog, my students are excited to write and to publish their work," Owens said. "They love getting comments."

The Kidblog website provides a platform for the students to share written reflections about the chos-en book and to give and receive feedback from students at other schools.

This helps them develop critical thinking skills and provides a platform for them to hone their writing skills and learn more about Internet technologies.

Approximately 10,000 people attended the OSBA conference, exposing Groveport Madison's participation in the Global Read Aloud project to a wide audience.

District spokeswoman Dee Copas said the innovative programs showcased at the Student Achievement Fair from districts throughout Ohio "offered an opportunity to observe and learn what public school districts in Ohio are doing to enhance learning and achievement in their schools."

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