As we come to a close on the end of the 2015-2016 school year, the Digital Learning Team hopes these weekly blog posts have been helpful in introducing new web tools to your classroom. This is our last Wednesday Web Tool for the 2015-2016 school year, we look forward to resuming our posts in August.
Newsela is a popular web tool for nonfiction and current events articles for students. One of the best features that Newsela offers are their text sets. These are curated collections of articles in various categories including subject area, language, state news, and featured content. You can also create your own text set to assign to students based on a subject area or topic of study.
To get started, visit: https://newsela.com and sign in to your account (Google account sign-in is available for Newsela).
On the top right corner of the page, look for the "TEXT SETS" menu.
From this menu, you can select text sets by categories, see text sets you have favorited, and create your own text set. First, I'm going to look at the state text sets.
The state text sets are listed by the date of the most recent article added to the collection. On the top left side under the title of the text set, I can see who created the text set. You can follow text sets made by other users by searching for the name of the text set or browsing all text sets under the "featured text sets" category.
To follow a text set, click on the heart icon on the top right of the page. As new articles are added to the text set, they will appear in the "text sets you (heart)" category.
Let's create our own text set!
From the "TEXT SETS" menu, click on "Create your first text set".
Give your text set a name and description. You can also select the visibility of your text set. If you want students to be able to see the collection, you must click on "Everyone" visibility.
To add articles to your text set, use the search bar in the middle of the page. Since this text set is for 4th grade students, I searched for articles on agriculture and entrepreneurship. It is easy to edit your text set at anytime.
Here is a video overview of text sets from Newsela:
I love the variety of text sets available in Newsela and the Spanish collection for English Language Learners. I hope you explore text sets as you start to plan for next year!