Enliven your Classroom with Read Across America!

Calling all classrooms! It’s time to read across America!

Every year the National Education Association hosts Read Across America, a program that helps classrooms around the country embrace the wonders of reading. The NEA’s Read Across America Calendar outlines suggested books for each month to help you plan your lessons ahead of time. No matter what grade level, they have you covered! And as a bonus, they provide resources and activities to bring the stories to life with your students!

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one."-George R. R. Martin

So, how does 3Doodler help students read across America?

At 3Doodler, not only do we understand the importance of reading, we also know that learning takes place by reflecting on the stories that have been read. We’ve picked out two of our ELA Lessons for your Read Across America curriculum that will help your students lift the stories off the page!

Now, let’s have students explore what they’ve read in a fun and tactile way!

Elementary School

Puppets and Props (Story Retelling)

In this English Language Arts activity, students partake in a read aloud, shared or guided reading experience with the classroom, then work together to enact a scene from the story using Doodled finger puppets. Story retells are a great way to build language, speaking and listening skills. The students’ puppet shows will reflect an understanding of story structure, sequence, and reading comprehension.

Suggested Books

Pie is for Sharing by Stephanie Parsley Ledyard
Saffron Ice Cream by Rashin Kheiriyeh

Middle and High School

3Doodler Stop-Motion

Students identify the theme of a fictional text, summarize a scene that best reflects the theme, and create a 3Doodler stop-motion animation to enact the selected scene. Creative thinking skills will be integrated into this hands-on project that will help you assess your students’ level of comprehension.

Suggested Books

Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi
Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

Be sure to share your Read Across America projects with the EDU community on Twitter! @3Doodler #3Doodler #ReadAcrossAmerica

Check out our library of K-12 Lesson Plans!

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Unearthing the Hidden Curriculum through Doodling

While circling the room to assist and assess in a math activity using 3Doodler pens, I overheard one student say to his partner, “You’ve got a point there. Okay, let’s try it your way.” Although these words on the surface appear insignificant, the fact that these two boys who typically argued about everything were listening to each other gave me pause for reflection.

How many times over the course of the year had I observed beliefs, behaviors and attitudes widened by the art of Doodling? Yet none of these worthy attributes appeared on any of my instructional rubrics. Though these skills are valuable to students in all aspects of life, they are a part of what is known as the “hidden curriculum”.

There’s the core curriculum we teach directly through math, science, language arts and civics instruction. But dig deeper, and you will unearth the hidden curriculum. These are the emotional lessons that arise systemically from how we teach, rather than what we teach. What message are you sending to your students? And, how would you teach if you knew that the hidden curriculum would be subject to the same standardized-high-stakes testing as the core curriculum? Ironically, the hidden curriculum carries equal if not more serious implications to a generation dealing with an increasingly complex world.

Here are 4 ways in which 3Doodler pens enhance the hidden curriculum.

1. Behaviors:

Students who act out when they are lost or confused are displaying a reactive outcome to their frustration. The poor behavior is a symptom stemming from the problem. Doodling helps illustrate thinking in ways which touch us viscerally. We become interconnected with the learning, enmeshed in the process of creation. Endurance is sustained even in moments of rigor, as we are creating something unique that carries our mark.

2. Attitudes:

When students shut down, why persist in instructional repetition? Einstein said that the mark of insanity was repeating the same behaviors over and over again while expecting a different outcome. Using a 3Doodler pen opens up instruction to new ways of thinking and meeting goals. It is the fresh and creative air that can sometimes re-energize learning.

3. Beliefs:

When students believe that they cannot do something, it is a difficult task to convince them otherwise. The 3Doodler pen moves beyond words, illustrating an open array of ways that they may succeed in a task. They begin to believe in their abilities, and those of others, when activities are creative and open-ended to boundless possibilities.

4. Perspective:

Whether the task is to create a one-size-fits-all art project or essay, the unintentional results are conformity. And while, these types of results are much easier to quickly assess, especially on standardized tests, they do not allow students to explore who they are as individuals, nor do they afford them practice in listening and navigating the perspectives of their peers. The art of Doodling is a genuinely open and giving activity that embraces the innovative spirit. It shows us not only who we are personally, but also interpersonally.

It’s time to unearth the hidden curriculum inside our classrooms, and to look beyond the standard rubric to those aesthetic attributes that carve the human spirit. We must welcome it for its complex values and for the ways in which it enriches our students. Education should aim to teach more than facts, it should instill heart, as well.

If you think you’re ready to challenge these misconceptions, check out our library of Lesson Plans here.

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Julia Dweck is a published children’s author and public school teacher who works with students in grades K-5. Her teaching style focuses on the importance of creative and open-ended thinking. Julia is the 2016 winner of the Da Vinci Science Award for her innovative integration of technology in the classroom.

She serves as a school resource and exemplar for inventive implementation of the arts and sciences. Julia encourages her students, friends, and peers to take risks, whenever possible, in order to grow. Follow her on Twitter: @GiftedTawk

An App Exclusively for 3D Pens!

You asked, we listened. For the first time, 3Doodler has an App!

With the 3Doodler App, you can use your device as a canvas*. Forget Doodling with your phone, we’re talking about Doodling on your phone. Literally!

Our 3D Pen App includes

  • Step-By-Step Tutorials for the 3Doodler Start and Create+
  • Over 24 Traceable Stencils
  • A shoot and share function
  • And you can ask us questions directly from the App!

Stay tuned for frequent updates, including new projects, stencils, and multi-lingual support.

The 3Doodler App works with Android, iPhone, iPad and more!

We can’t wait to see your Doodles! Share them with us through the 3Doodler App!


Get the App Now!


* Usage and safety instructions apply. The 3Doodler Start is low temperature, and can be used directly against your device’s screen for prolonged periods. The 3Doodler Create+ has a hot tip, and we recommend using the 3Doodler Create DoodlePad® between your 3Doodler Create+ and your device to reduce risk to your device.

Want even more free projects? Be sure to check out our Tutorials page

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