Reader's Theater via Google Hangout

Hi friends, welcome to the Punchbowl! Sarah from Mrs B's First Grade here to talk to you about a fun twist on readers theater today. Want to take yours up a notch with technology? Read on to learn how!

We have all used readers theater in our classroom to work on important reading skills such as fluency and expression. It usually involves a few students performing for your class or possibly another class in the school. Although this is fun and an effective strategy for working on these skills, it has been done time and time again. With amazing technology at our fingertips, why not try it a different way?

In my classroom we have been performing readers theater with other classes via Google Hangout or Skype. How do we do it? It's simple! Follow the steps below!

Step One - Find a Class
The first step for a virtual readers theater is to find a class to perform with. You can do this through social media (my favorite avenue is Twitter) or you can simply find a teacher friend from another school that is willing to try it out with you. Don't be afraid to ask - most teachers love to give new technology ideas a try!

Step Two - Select a Readers Theater and Plan a Time
The best reader theater scripts have two characters or roles on them. That way your class can take one and the other class can take another. There are a lot of fun ones on Teachers pay Teachers, or you can also use the books from the You Read to Me I'll Read to You series.

After you have your script selected, plan the day and time you are going to "meet" on Google Hangout or Skype. Don't forget about timezone differences! You will only need to plan for 15-20 minutes. That can include an introduction and a goodbye. One more thing you don't want to forget is to get the Google Hangout or Skype name of the other teacher. It is also a good idea to test your connection before your planned date.

Step Three - Practice!
After you choose which class will read which part, practice with your class! I usually do this whole group.

Step Four - Connect and Perform
The last step is to connect with the class and perform! Don't worry about it if your kids are not perfect, just have fun with it! If you can, have someone video your class participating. My class always loves watching how they did once we are done. It's also a great way to access your fluency!

It's as simple as that! If you have any other questions, please feel free to email me at

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