Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Reading Classics By Email

I enjoy to read, although I don't make enough time for it. And there are any number of excuses I could give but I will spare you. So when I hear about DailyLit, I was intrigued and decided to give it a go.

Here is how it works. You sign up using any number of accounts you already have (Twitter, Facebook, Google, OpenID). Fill out as much of the profile as you want, upload a photo, bio, etc and connect your Twitter and/or Facebook if you want to send updates there and you are done. Takes just a few moments.

So, you are armed with your account. What do you do now? Browse. There are almost 1000 titles to choose from, all free. It's been a while since I had to read any classics (high school to be exact) so I headed over to that section to check out the offering. Don Quixote sounds good. I remember reading it but it seemed like a good choice to start out with.

This is where things get interesting. It's not an eBook in the traditional sense that you read on your reader. Instead the thing that makes DailyLit appealing is the fact that you get the book in chunks, delivered to you via email or, even better, RSS. You decide the frequency of the chunks. I am getting mine daily around 9am via email. But maybe you want to get your just through the week or on the weekends. Or maybe a different time of day. Or maybe you want longer chunks or shorter ones. It is so easy to customize or even suspend and pick it up later if you want. Don Quixote is 454 installments if that gives you an idea. Takes about five minutes to read but remember you can make those chunks longer and even get them more often, say a a few at at time to save up for a trip through the airport or traveling in the car.

You can subscribe to more than one book at a time, but keep in mind, if you are like me, you might not want to try to keep up with several books at once. Oh and did I mention you can read these on any device. So anywhere you can access your email or RSS feeds you can read the chunks.

So checking this all out got me thinking about the classroom. Some kids get really intintimidated by just the size of some texts and are turned off. This is a very easy and non-threatening way to get kids engaged in reading some really great books. And from a lesson standpoint. If you know what chunks kids are reading because of the frequency, it can make things a little easier.

While you are at the beach or on vacation this summer check out DailyLit, and their wide offering of texts and think about how you could use it in or out of the classroom.

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