Using Technology to Promote Literacy

Everyone has a cellphone. But not everyone knows how to build reading and writing skills with their kids. (Or, has time to think up new ideas every day.) Which is why I’m very excited about the Pocket Literacy Coach, a new sponsor of Imagination Soup, a company which provides research-based literacy ideas for parents of children ages two to twelve with text messages.

Pocket Literacy sends a brief text message to a your cell phone with a literacy activity. Each account is personalized with the child’s age so the activities are developmentally appropriate for your child. (Although, if you need to make the activities harder or easier, you can modify in either direction with a quick email.)

JJ is six and here are some activities we’ve been texted:

  • Improve vocabulary! Brainstorm a list of words aloud & have your child guess the category. Take turns playing. Ex: snakes, lizards, tortoise . . . REPTILES!
  • Take turns telling a story with your child. Start by saying, I heard a loud crash and a scream . . . Have your child pick up and continue story. Then you pick up again and so on.
  • Treasure Map. Hide a treat somewhere inside or outside of your house. Make a map with directions and symbols for your child two use on their treasure hunt. Have fun!
  • Help your child to make a daily schedule. Teach them the importance of prioritizing activities: Snack, homework, chores, tv. Encourage them to write schedule.

Aren’t these great ideas? And, the awesome part is I get PLC text messages five days a week; ideas that are easy to implement and don’t require a lot of supplies.

A month of text messages costs only $5.99 (or as like to say, a venti latte and change.)

Five days a week of ideas that I don’t have to think up myself works for me. What about you? Ready to sign up for Pocket Literacy yet?

Dr. Chris Drew created Pocket Literacy to inspire and educate parents. He used research like the PBS Kids Ready To Learn Cell Phone Study. 95% of parents who received educational text messages in the PBS Study reported that “a cell phone used in this way can be an effective learning tool.”

A daily literacy habit leads to excellence in reading and learning says Drew. He shares this quote from Aristotle on his website:Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.”

Check out Pocket Literacy and the awesome PLC team of teachers and curriculum specialists who are creating these texts. You can follow Pocket Literacy on Twitter or fan them on Facebook.

The Books of Amy Krouse Rosenthal