Creating meaningful digital ELA lessons can be a challenge. First, you need to plan an interesting and standards-based lesson, then you need to make it work with technology. One of my favourite ways to take my pen and paper lessons and move them into digital ELA lessons is to use Google Slides.
Why Do I Love Google Slides for Digital Lessons
- Students can write directly in the slides. They do not need to open up a separate application.
- Teachers can provide hyperlinks to other slides and websites.
- Readings, questions, graphic organizers can be embedded into the background of a Google Slide so that the text does not shift around.
- It allows for moveable pieces, colour and font selection. Students get to be creative.
- It can be assigned in Google Classroom as “Make A Copy For Each Student”. When I first starting working with G-Suite products teachers could only share the view-only link with their students and then students would have to make a copy in their Google Drive. Messy Google Drives are just like messy desks – you can’t find anything. Now all classwork and assignments are neatly organized in Google Classroom.
Digital learning can be fun and rigorous at the same time.
Here Are My Favourite Digital ELA Lessons for Middle School ELA
This short story unit contains great short stories for middle school classrooms. Students will enjoy this differentiated and engaging unit. This unit focuses on literary elements of plot, character, setting, theme, and conflict as well as these literary devices: similes, metaphors, symbols and foreshadowing. Use this unit to introduce or review literary elements and literary devices with your students
High-Interest Non-Fiction Articles (Bermuda Triangle, Energy Drinks, Electric Cars)
Students will learn about one of the high-interest topics in these non-fiction articles. This resource contains 1 non-fiction article and 3 reading activities to assist with reading comprehension, standardized test prep (EQAO) and cross-curricular learning.
Article of the Week Differentiated Assignment (Use with any non-fiction article)
Help your students purposely engage with non-fiction texts using this differentiated article of the week four lesson bundle.
This no-prep, print and go resource can be used in any content area or English Language Arts classroom to help students gain background knowledge, practice their reading, writing and analysis skills as well as keep classroom engagement high.
Each week assign an article for students to read and respond to. Keep the assignment relevant by using current articles that match your course content.
This resource can be used to teach ANY novel for whole-class novel studies, book clubs, literature circles or independent reading.
Students will enjoy this differentiated and engaging unit. This unit focuses on the literary elements of plot, character, setting, theme, and conflict as well as these literary devices: similes, metaphors, symbols and foreshadowing. Use this unit to introduce or review literary elements and literary devices with your students.
Help your students develop a deeper understanding of media literacy with this engaging 10 lesson unit. Students will learn about the various techniques advertisers use to make commercials and public service announcements effective. Lessons include target audience, commercial techniques, PSA techniques, and effective camera angles and shots. This unit culminates with a student-created PSA project.
Students will read a biography, memoir or autobiography and then create a life map outlining the important events in their chosen person’s life. After creating the life map students will provide a written explanation and oral presentation of their life map.
Keep your students organized during independent reading. This independent reading assignment is a collection of 6 Independent Reading Tracking Forms and 1 Reading Journal Assignment. These reading tracking forms help students stay organized and purposeful during reading workshop or independent reading time. Easy to use assessment forms are included to ensure student accountability and less teacher marking stress.
help your students think purposely about their futures with this Career Exploration and Research Project. Students will get excited about career research by taking an online career quiz, then brainstorming possible career choices.
Then they will follow a guided assignment process – brainstorming, research, career poster creation, and oral presentation with scheduled check-ins throughout the process to ensure project completion. Level and points-based assessment sheets are provided in this assignment.
Rant Writing Presentation (Students can present on Flipgrid or by another video platform)
Rant writing is an engaging way to bring public speaking and persuasive writing into the classroom. Students rant and complain to each other daily, why not channel that creative energy into some high-quality writing? Rants are an engaging way to get students writing and sharing their thoughts and opinions in the classroom. This assignment can be used for argument and/or persuasive writing.
10 Consumer Awareness Lessons (Students watch short videos, complete questions and an extend your thinking assignment)
Students will develop a deeper understanding of consumer awareness and media literacy with this engaging 10 lesson bundle.
Checkout Charities, Clothing Waste, Gender Price Differences, Outlet vs. Retail, Bottled Water, Misleading Food Labels, Breakfast Sandwiches, Makeup Testers, Healthy or Junk Food, and Fast Food Chicken.
The digital ELA lessons outlined in this blog post will keep your students engaged and focused during times of necessary online schooling such as snow days, bad weather days, school closures, pandemics, etc.