by Joe Kemery: @Mr_Kemery
Read&Write for Google Chrome is one of those tools that I completely overlook, yet I use almost daily. But this week, I was reminded of how powerful a tool it can be for students. Read&Write offers a range of powerful support tools to help students gain confidence with reading, writing, studying and research. Students are able to hear words, passages, or whole documents read aloud with easy-to-follow highlighting, guiding students through the text as it is read aloud to them. Having documents that the students are writing read aloud has been so powerful when trying to teach about the flow and tone of their writing, even if it is kind of robotic in tone. Thanks to the picture dictionary, students can explore a .pdf or website with the meaning of words explained with text and pictures. Especially with our English learners, content specific articles can be translated. Beyond that, when I think to my social studies and science instructions, it is very empowering to have them hear text translated into their other languages. Now, the focus can be on the content being taught, using the same materials that my native English speakers are using.
When trying to gather resources, using the highlights tool and having them collected is so valuable in making sure that key concepts are not overlooked. I can pull from multiple resources using highlights, and have those highlighted notes instantly compiled into one document which can be easily shared with my students and colleagues. Even more impressive, it will bring the source information with it, helping students to cite their sources. I like to have my students use different color highlights to help them organize ideas as well, which is a key visual cue for them as they begin to compose a written response. Read&Write will also summarize text on websites, which has really helped when trying to assist students in getting the main points of a text when academic language and reading level are a concern. When creating a document, many of the standard features are available. Speech-to-text is included with the extension (though I still tend to use Google’s Voice Typing more often).
The Premium version of Read & Write for Google Chrome is Free for Teachers.
If you are a teacher, use this form to enter your information, and you will receive a premium license.