Tiny Social Reading Activities

A simple way to enrich online classes by making up tiny #SocialReading activities to help people practice key skills. Making a new tiny social reading activity is easy, just complete three sentences:

  1. I want people to learn…
  2. Together we’ll be reading…
  3. We’ll share…

This idea started with a poster session Jeremy Dean (@dr_jdean), Steel Wagstaff (@steelwagstaff) and I gave at EDUCAUSE 2019 #EDU19. We used it to show how one can invent simple, but powerful learning activities that could be delivered face-to-face or online, using tools like Pressbooks, Hypothesis and H5P.

I’ve shared some example “tiny social reading activities” from the poster session and the Twitter thread where I reintroduced this idea. Share your own examples, either as annotations or comments here, and/or added on to that Twitter thread. What are simple ways you can imagine learners sharing their engagement with texts to make reading more visible, active and social?

Example A: English

  1. I want people to learn how to read more slowly and savor the words.
  2. Together we’ll be reading poetry like John Donne’s “A Valediction Forbidding Mourning“.
  3. We’ll share our annotations on nouns in poems, including images/animated GIFs/videos inspired by the nouns we read.

Example B: Computer Science

  • I want people to learn that there is more than one way to code logic.
  • Together we’ll be reading open-source code on GitHub, GitLab, or anywhere code is published in different coding languages.
  • We’ll share annotations that show/link to other ways highlighted logic could be coded.

Example C: Math

  1. I want people to learn how to recognize how math can be applied to real-world situations.
  2. Together we’ll be reading popular media online, looking for mathy situations.
  3. We’ll share annotations where equations are applied to real-world “story problems” we find online.

Example D: Art/Art History

  • I want people to learn how certain artists use specific color palettes.
  • Together we’ll be looking a specific artworks and distilling their palettes.
  • We’ll share annotations linking the original works online to other artworks or photos that use similar palettes.

Thanks to a nudge from Chahira Nouira (@CosmoCat), I’ve shared the “Tiny Social Reading Activities” handout originally used at EDUCAUSE 2019 with CC BY open licensing, so you can copy, modify, and reuse it. There are two versions, the latest with the more informal 3rd step: “We’ll share”. Visit the Google Presentation version to download in various formats or copy it for your own use.

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