What Is Bookopolis?
I’m always on the lookout for new ways to get my students excited about reading. This summer, I came across a website from AASL’s 2015 List of Best Websites for Teaching and Learning that does exactly that. Bookopolis is a free online tool that combines social networking with reading and book sharing. Geared towards students ages 7-12, Bookopolis is a place where kids can keep track of books they’ve read, explore new books, recommend books to other young readers, and earn cool badges and points. They can express themselves as readers and connect with their classmates in a safe and fun way.
Educators can create a “teacher account” and then set up their class(es) and an account for each student. The students can view their classmates’ pages to see what they’re reading. They can send book recommendations to each other and read reviews of books posted by their friends. Bookopolis is compliant with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. You can add parents’ email to students’ accounts to let them access their child’s Bookopolis account.
Why I Like It
Bookopolis gives students the opportunity to practice persuasive writing, comprehension, and keyboarding by writing reviews and reports. Anything the students write has to be approved by a moderator before it will post to the site. Additionally, interacting with peers on Bookopolis fosters good digital citizenship skills.
Another feature of Bookopolis that I really like is the Book Quest. Book Quest asks students a series of questions to help create a personalized list of book suggestions. This is great for reluctant readers and students who finish a series and don’t know what to read next.
I have been using Bookopolis with my fifth-grade students for the past few weeks, and they’re hooked. Many of my students have downloaded the Bookopolis app at home and are adding books and writing reviews in their free time. Others will come find me first thing in the morning, wanting to know if I got their book recommendations. It is very rewarding for me to see my students so excited to talk about what they’re reading. I should also mention they LOVE that they get to select their own avatar!
Author: Jenna Grodzicki
I have been in education for the past 15 years. Currently, I am the K-5 Library Media Specialist at Thalberg Elementary School in Southington, Connecticut. Prior to that, I taught kindergarten, first grade, and third grade. I am also a picture book author. My first book, PIXIE’S ADVENTURE, is coming out in early 2017 from eTreasures Publishing. More than anything, I LOVE to read! I also love skiing and cheering for the best team in baseball, the Boston Red Sox!