BookStuff." I created discussion threads on the site just like those in Edmodo with the exception that I cannot limit access to the threads to only the group members working on each thread. I also linked to the site all the "BookTalk" podcasts that I have for some of the books that we do. This puts all the resource materials for each of the books we do in one place. I felt that even if we did not have any problems with Edmodo the new site would still be a very valuable resource. As it turned out we did have problems with Edmodo in that not all students were successful posting to the site; they got the "spinning wheel" indicating the iPad Edmodo app was trying to send the post to the site, but that for one reason or another the post was not accepted to the site. I do not know if this is because there are so many trying to use the wi-fi connection at the same time that nothing moves quickly or if there is some other problem. There did not appear to be any problems posting to the new web site, however. I have only heard good things about Edmodo, so I am assuming there is something I need to do with the settings for the site, or perhaps it is wi-fi overload. In any case, the first week of the new "quizzes" seems to have gone well. We are, after a fashion, finding our academic "true north."
The video is of Billy Collins performing some of his poems as animated cartoons. This is another way that literature can be made available to students in a way that makes it a bit more accessible and, perhaps, entertaining. Collins' poems are themselves rich in humor and wit and are more accessible than some poetry to students, but the animations add another diminsion to the poems. There is more to literature than just its entertainment value, but the literature that survives the centuries usually survives because it continues to speak to us and to our humanity as it continues to entertain us. Like any acquired taste, classical music, the opera, French cooking, some guided exposure to the work is often necessary before the work begins to speak to us, to touch and to move us. It is more often than not worth the investment of time and adds richness and depth to our lives.