EDIM 508 Spotlight on Strategies



I found a strategy called "paper chat", and challenged myself to turn it into an activity that incorporates technology that engages the creative mind. The idea behind paper chat is that all students get to use their own answers and ideas without talking. Even students who do not typically feel comfortable sharing out loud are able to share their thoughts and ideas. I will have them do this by listening to the book through an online reading of Youtube, and then creating a visualization of the main character Stanley through the SketchBook app on their iPads. The only downside I saw to this was the anonymity, because this could be used for a formative assessment too! To use this as a formative assessment I decided to have students hand their final products in using Dropbox so I knew who it came from. After all responses have been received we will discuss images submitted by students and make an anchor chart about the main character, Stanley, while discussing what characterization is. According to Finley, by having a meaningful whole class discussion where students are engaged, they are learning empathy, understanding, and higher order thinking skills.


First, students will use a pair of headphones and listen to the first three chapters of the book Holes. The reading can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gip3zm7WGgc

While listening to the story, students will use Word to take notes about Stanley. What makes him who he is? What does he look like? What does he do?

After the story is finished, students will pick thing they wrote about Stanley. They will then open SketchBook on their iPads and create a drawing of the sentence they used to describe Stanley. Students must write the sentence they are illustrating on their sketch.

When students are finished, they will turn in their pictures through DropBox. As a class, we will go through each picture and discuss how the detail helps us define Stanley. We will create a characterization anchor chart using our smart board.


As a challenge, I would ask my advanced students to also create an image of characterization of the warden. Not much is said about the warden, so those students would be able to compare and contrast characterization later in the book between Stanley and the warden using the online Venn Diagram generator at: https://www.gliffy.com/go/html5/launch?app=1b5094b0-6042-11e2-bcfd-0800200c9a66

An alternate challenge would be to have my advanced students read chapters 1-3 independently. I do like to test listening comprehension though, so another option would be to record my students reading ahead of time and have their peers listen to their reading.

In an educational setting, I would challege my peers to find a program that is free and allows students to create images without an account. That was MY biggest challenge!


Blue Moons Light. (2013, July 30). Reading Holes: Chapters 1-3 [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gip3zm7WGgc

Bowdoin, S. (2015, August 24). Summer Twist on Paper Chat. Retrieved from http://blog.discoveryeducation.com/blog/2015/08/24/sos-summer-twist-on-paper-chat/

Finley, T. (2013, June 24). Rethinking Whole Class Discussion | Edutopia. Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/rethinking-whole-class-discussion-todd-finley

Gliffy. (n.d.). Create Venn Diagrams | Gliffy. Retrieved from https://www.gliffy.co


North Dakota Studies Program. (n.d.). 2 - Venn Diagram | North Dakota Studies. Retrieved from http://ndstudies.gov/content/2-venn-diagram