Author: Julie Hembree

JulieHembree_copyJulie Hembree (@mrs_hembree) Seattle, WA, USA Julie Hembree is an elementary teacher-librarian in the Lake Washington School District. In her spare time she is usually found reading and is convinced that she was born with a book in her hands. As such, she is a book nerd and became a tech convert, when she realized that technology could be the creative link between literacy, student engagement and providing students with an authentic global audience. She hosts the award winning Bulldog Reader Blog and has presented on integrating literacy with technology at regional and national conferences. She believes that the ability to read is an investment in the future where technology provides the tools for students to succeed in a rapidly changing world. In 2012 she and her students founded the Books to Africa global literacy project and have sent over 3,000 books to their MIE partner schools in Africa. The teachers and students on both continents connect regularly through social media, blogging and Skype. Julie participated in the 2012 US Forum and Global Forum in Prague and was a 2014 Microsoft Expert Educator in Barcelona.

Read all posts from Julie Hembree below.

Julie Hembree: Learning 21CLD Collaboration Skills Through Reading

by Julie Hemree Expert Educator Columnist, USA Sometimes the lessons of teamwork come from situations where you least expect it. Athletes who play team sports like football, soccer or baseball know that your team is only as strong as your weakest player. It takes a team to lose and it takes a team to win. On the other hand, a reading incentive program isn’t usually considered as a collaborative model. Battle of the Books however, it not your typical reading program, and has everything to do with authentic teamwork skills. The Oxford dictionary defines teamwork as the “combined action of a group of people, especially when effective and efficient.” Of all the 21st century learning design skills, I believe the ability to work effectively in a collaborative team rises above all others. In a traditional school, teachers most often assign students to complete individual tasks such as worksheets, reports or assignments for a singular grade in the gradebook. While this model has value, overuse of this style of instruction sets students up for failure in …


Julie Hembree: Adding Coding to Your Literacy Bag of Tricks

by Julie Hembree Expert Educator Columnist, USA I am a reader, a writer and an elementary school librarian. What I am not is a computer programmer or coder, or so I thought until recently. This fall when the wave of publicity increased about the Hour of Code, and National Computer Science week, I dismissed it. I simply didn’t think coding was anything I needed to teach during my library lessons, especially in elementary school. I have so much to teach in my weekly lessons already, why should I add more to my plate? What on earth could coding have to do with literacy? It turns out, the answer is a lot. I visited the Hour of Code resource page and watched videos that stressed coding should be as valued as reading, writing and math. “Everyone in this country should learn how to program a computer…” they said. Intrigued I tried out one of the tutorials meant for the kindergarten through second grade students, knowing with my coding skill set, this was the perfect place for …