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Author Topic: Scholastic loses it
Lisa
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So Tova brought home the Scholastic Books thing yesterday, and we went through it to see what might be good.

Now... I've gotten over the fact that about a third of the things in there are no longer books, but cutsey product tie-ins. Fine, they want to make money.

But one of the books on it this month is also available in MP3. Freaking audiobooks. Scholastic is about kids reading, and they're offering audiobooks.

I am so appalled...

(and before someone suggests it, there's absolutely no indication that it's intended for the visually impaired)

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Wendybird
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Its sad. I hate the software one they always send home too. I never purchase software from them. They are for books!
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Liz B
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Listening to audiobooks is one way for weaker readers to access stories, feel more positive about books, and (when used in conjunction with text) improve as readers.

I'm not saying that's what scholastic is trying to do.

Just that audiobooks can be an integral part of reading instruction--and learning to love reading.

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MattP
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Our family listens to audiobooks on long trips in the car. I don't see anything wrong with my children being able to shop for these books in the same venues where they shop for other books.
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lobo
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Why do you have such strong feelings that scholastic HAS to only sell books? I mean half of their books are trash to start with (and always has been).
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brojack17
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Lisa,

I like to get the read along books for the kids from the library. I really enjoyed them as a kid and my kids like them too. Of course, that is a little different than an audio book.

Also, I love the name Tova. Is that the name you use on-line or is that the real name? What does it mean? Is it typically male or female? To quote Wilbur, "Great name!"

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Orincoro
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quote:
Originally posted by lobo:
Why do you have such strong feelings that scholastic HAS to only sell books? I mean half of their books are trash to start with (and always has been).

I'm actually a little surprised they still give those scholastic order forms to students. It used to be a whole ritual for me of taking the folded sheet home to my mother, and circling the items I might want, and then giving it to her for approval. Then she would give me an envelope with the order form ticket off and a check for the amount, and I would take it to school, and a few weeks (or a month) later the books would arrive. It was all actually fun for me. Now though, you can do all that online in the same time, and with no postage paid. I wonder why they still do it this way.
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Traceria
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Scholastic also brings back fond memories for me. There was always some book or another to circle in the catalog, but there were also STICKERS. Man, was I a sticker collector.

This may be a strange position to take, but while I myself enjoy audiobooks all the time, I don't really like the idea of kids having carte blanche access to them. Audio WITH visual is fine, but completely giving over to audio only gives me pause. It's kind of like the argument against calculators when kids should be focused on learning their basic math skills. Later, when those skills are established in an individual, a calculator as a time-saving and accuracy tool is fine, but they need to develop those base math and reading skills first.

As an adult, however, audiobooks have provided me with a way to listen to old favorites when it's impossible to be reading a paper book, like in my car, while working on the computer at work, or getting reading in the morning. I get more 'reading' in that I would otherwise, more stories can go through my head than would if I was confined to reading paper books alone.

Speaking of... *pops in audio copy of Fahrenheit 451*

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Stephan
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[/QUOTE]I'm actually a little surprised they still give those scholastic order forms to students. It used to be a whole ritual for me of taking the folded sheet home to my mother, and circling the items I might want, and then giving it to her for approval. Then she would give me an envelope with the order form ticket off and a check for the amount, and I would take it to school, and a few weeks (or a month) later the books would arrive. It was all actually fun for me. Now though, you can do all that online in the same time, and with no postage paid. I wonder why they still do it this way. [/QB][/QUOTE]

Some of my students don't have the internet at home. Very few of my wife's students have it at home. Of course we work in an area where some 4 year olds are being locked in a closet all day because their parents cannot afford daycare. So yeah, the old ways are not done yet in many parts of the country.

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Orincoro
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Wow. I always hear statistics for internet access that are so much lower than my experience would suggest- but then I grew up in an area where the internet became a dominant part of the industry, and then went to a UC where computer access was a requirement- as an expat teacher, computer and internet access are essential.
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Christine
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I don't see the problem with scholastic offering audiobooks on any level -- either from an educational nor a business standpoint. I also don't see a problem with them offering educational software. I am unlikely to get their software because it isn't all that good and I'm unlikely to order the audiobooks anytime soon because at the moment my son is too early in the process of learning to read...he's just starting to get the connection between letters, sounds, and words. In a few years, who knows?
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Lisa
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:

I'm actually a little surprised they still give those scholastic order forms to students. It used to be a whole ritual for me of taking the folded sheet home to my mother, and circling the items I might want, and then giving it to her for approval. Then she would give me an envelope with the order form ticket off and a check for the amount, and I would take it to school, and a few weeks (or a month) later the books would arrive. It was all actually fun for me. Now though, you can do all that online in the same time, and with no postage paid. I wonder why they still do it this way. [/QUOTE]

Um... because it puts pressure on the parents to have the kids saying, "I want this! I want this!" From a marketing perspective, it makes a lot of sense.

quote:
Originally posted by brojack17:
Also, I love the name Tova. Is that the name you use on-line or is that the real name? What does it mean? Is it typically male or female? To quote Wilbur, "Great name!"

Thanks. No, that's actually her name. It's Hebrew for "good" (or "favor", in modern Hebrew, but that's not why we chose it). I've heard of boys named Tov, but that's really rare. Tova is the feminine, and is used only for girls. My partner's grandmother passed away while she was pregnant with Tova, and her name was Gita, which is Yiddish for "good". Tova is the Hebrew version of the name.

Also, Tobit (as in the biblical book) and Tobias and Tevye (as in the main character in Fiddler on the Roof) and Tuvya are from the same word.

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brojack17
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That is awsome. I'll say again, great name!

Much better than Jack, which means, another name for John. Not that I don't like Jack, because I really do, but it doesn't have a cool story like Tova's.

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Sterling
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Whatever happened to the books that came with recordings of the reading? ("Turn the page when you hear the [chime]!") I mean, yeah, in my childhood, they came on 45s, but still...
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Traceria
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quote:
Originally posted by Sterling:
Whatever happened to the books that came with recordings of the reading? ("Turn the page when you hear the [chime]!") I mean, yeah, in my childhood, they came on 45s, but still...

They're still passed around now and then. My younger cousins, who are 6 and 8, still use them on an old record player. [Smile]
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Paul Goldner
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I broke a whole slew of cassettes of disney stories like that when I was little... we got them when I was about, 3 maybe? and on car trips I'd sit in the backseat with the cassette player and a stack of cassettes and the little illustrated books of disney stories. Kept me quiet on those 4 hour drives to and from new york or maine.
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Traceria
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quote:
Originally posted by Paul Goldner:
I broke a whole slew of cassettes of disney stories like that when I was little... we got them when I was about, 3 maybe? and on car trips I'd sit in the backseat with the cassette player and a stack of cassettes and the little illustrated books of disney stories. Kept me quiet on those 4 hour drives to and from new york or maine.

Do you remember watching filmstrips in school, too? The little tone would go off and the lucky person (or unlucky if students could get away with sleeping in that class, I suppose) who had been chosen to change to the next image would have to turn the knob. Was it a knob? Can't even remember now!
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Stephan
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quote:
Originally posted by Paul Goldner:
I broke a whole slew of cassettes of disney stories like that when I was little... we got them when I was about, 3 maybe? and on car trips I'd sit in the backseat with the cassette player and a stack of cassettes and the little illustrated books of disney stories. Kept me quiet on those 4 hour drives to and from new york or maine.

And yet people feel like their kids must have dvd players in the car to keep them busy.
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Liz B
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quote:
This may be a strange position to take, but while I myself enjoy audiobooks all the time, I don't really like the idea of kids having carte blanche access to them. Audio WITH visual is fine, but completely giving over to audio only gives me pause. It's kind of like the argument against calculators when kids should be focused on learning their basic math skills. Later, when those skills are established in an individual, a calculator as a time-saving and accuracy tool is fine, but they need to develop those base math and reading skills first
It's nothing like calculators.

Why should a kid be preventing from listening to Harry Potter just because he doesn't yet have the vocabulary and decoding skills to tackle it in text form?

Or--right now the Clique books (from Scholastic) are very popular with 7th grade girls. They're far from high-quality literature (the book equivalent of watching America's Next Top Model...which I love, by the way), but lots of girls are reading them, talking about them, passing them around. We have 7th grade girls who are not good enough at reading yet to be able to read those books independently.

So...if they want to listen to it to be a part of what's going on, they shouldn't be allowed to until they eat their vegetables...uh, I mean, learn to read well enough to read it on their own?


Seriously. If listening to a book makes a kid feel better about books and reading, then it's a good thing.

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Traceria
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quote:
Originally posted by Liz B:
quote:
This may be a strange position to take, but while I myself enjoy audiobooks all the time, I don't really like the idea of kids having carte blanche access to them. Audio WITH visual is fine, but completely giving over to audio only gives me pause. It's kind of like the argument against calculators when kids should be focused on learning their basic math skills. Later, when those skills are established in an individual, a calculator as a time-saving and accuracy tool is fine, but they need to develop those base math and reading skills first
It's nothing like calculators.

Why should a kid be preventing from listening to Harry Potter just because he doesn't yet have the vocabulary and decoding skills to tackle it in text form?

Or--right now the Clique books (from Scholastic) are very popular with 7th grade girls. They're far from high-quality literature (the book equivalent of watching America's Next Top Model...which I love, by the way), but lots of girls are reading them, talking about them, passing them around. We have 7th grade girls who are not good enough at reading yet to be able to read those books independently.

So...if they want to listen to it to be a part of what's going on, they shouldn't be allowed to until they eat their vegetables...uh, I mean, learn to read well enough to read it on their own?


Seriously. If listening to a book makes a kid feel better about books and reading, then it's a good thing.

Good point. I defintely didn't think of it from that angle, especially since years ago the only way to get a book in audio was for a parent, teacher, librarian, etc. to read a book out loud to an audience of kids, something I do advocate. Completely overlooked that!

I will stand by my calculator view, however. [Wink]

I love America's Next Top Model, too, though it usually makes me blush to admit it.

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Orincoro
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Liz, I also agree. I think too much emphasis is put on the form of reading rather than the idea of "literacy" as a broader term. If I have (granted as an adult) listened to hundreds of books about many subjects that I would not have devoted the time and energy to actually reading in print, I feel ok about it. I don't see why kids are different. They should learn how to read in print, of course, but there's been no evidence presented here that shows that listening is an inferior experience- it carries its own advantages and obvious drawbacks. I tend to think, actually, that both should be required in school. Being able to listen to and absorb an audio presentation with good comprehension and recall is a skill that can be developed, just like reading in print. That's why I take with a grain of salt the comments from those who can't stand audiobooks- it really did take me many years of practice and perseverance to be able to usefully listen to difficult texts in audio form. It's something I don't think you can appreciate if you are not yourself a practitioner.
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Lisa
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quote:
Originally posted by brojack17:
That is awsome. I'll say again, great name!

Much better than Jack, which means, another name for John. Not that I don't like Jack, because I really do, but it doesn't have a cool story like Tova's.

Actually, Jack can be a nickname for either John or Jacob. Jacob is originally the Hebrew Yaakov, which was rendered as Akiva in Aramaic and as James in Greek. Yaakov has a modern Hebrew nickname of Kobi and Yiddish forms of Yankel and Yakki.

John is derived from the original Yochanan, which means God has graced, or may God grace. (I'm honestly not sure how Jack got to be a nickname for John.) In its various forms, it's one of the most widespread names in the world. An equivalent is Hananiah, who was one of the three people tossed into a furnace in Daniel. The Greek form of that is Ananias. Hananel and Elhanan are essentially the same name as well. And since the Phoenicians worshipped Baal instead of God, their version of the name was Hannibal.

Around the world, we have Johann, Hans, Johannes, Jean, Ivan, Ian, Juan, Joan, Joanne, Joanna, as well as hypercoristicons like Hannah and Anne.

So it's a cool name, too.

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Traceria
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:
... it really did take me many years of practice and perseverance to be able to usefully listen to difficult texts in audio form. It's something I don't think you can appreciate if you are not yourself a practitioner.

It can be very useful to have both forms there. I've listened to a few in the past in my car, made mental notes of certain passages, and then pulled the book off the shelf to locate those, usually to copy down in a quote book I keep. Sometimes, though, it would be so I could jott down notes in the margin.
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Goody Scrivener
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I'm another one who has no objection to Scholastic offering MP3 versions of their book offerings. I prefer to see that it's an additional format rather than the only one, as was the case in the original post on the thread. There are too many positive reasons to make them available. (And I wouldn't be surprised to find out that they were sued for discrimination for only having print copies available.)

I did get upset when I saw that Scholastic order forms were filled with more toys and stickers and activity kits than books, though.

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breyerchic04
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I haven't read most of the thread yet, just the top post.

Most of the young teachers I know get many of their supplies out of the the Scholastic catalog. For one it's cheap, but you also get big discounts when your students buy stuff.
In my education classes we have been given many reasons and ideas where audio books might be the best opportunity for teaching students. It lets students not listen to their teacher's voice all of the time, the teacher can pause it to direct discussion, as an mp3 it can be burnt and played on a cd, played from the computer, or induvidually to a student with learning disabilities via an mp3 player. It shouldn't be the only way a text is available, but I certainly want some audio books that aren't right out of the textbook, when I start my elementary classroom.

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brojack17
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Lisa,

I hope you have a name book handy and didn't pull that out from memory. Nevermind, that would be really cool if you did.

Thanks for the info on that. It's nice to be something other than "another name for John".

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Lisa
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Actually, I did kind of pull that out from memory. I like words.
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ketchupqueen
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quote:
(I'm honestly not sure how Jack got to be a nickname for John.)
Via the French.
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theamazeeaz
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I'm not a fan of audiobooks. The narrators always manage to sound too prim for me and read slower than I do in my head so I've only listened as a curiosity. Besides, audiobooks are EXPENSIVE, but stuff through scholastic's book order is usually significantly cheaper that bookstore list- if people like audio books, it's a good way to get them. And my mom NEVER bought me two or three dollars worth of stuff from the book order anyway.
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BlackBlade
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quote:
Originally posted by theamazeeaz:
I'm not a fan of audiobooks. The narrators always manage to sound too prim for me and read slower than I do in my head so I've only listened as a curiosity. Besides, audiobooks are EXPENSIVE, but stuff through scholastic's book order is usually significantly cheaper that bookstore list- if people like audio books, it's a good way to get them. And my mom NEVER bought me two or three dollars worth of stuff from the book order anyway.

Just a heads up, you will find you are not in friendly territory if you go after audiobooks in this forum. [Smile]
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Orincoro
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theamazeeaz- if you think audiobooks are expensive, you just don't know how to get them at the right price. Virtually every title available can be had for about 10 dollars if you know the right source. You are a sucker if you buy them in the bookstore, I will say that.
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Lostinspace
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I will say that as a teacher who is trying to encourage my students to read books I do get frustrated with all the junk that scholastic is putting in it now, but even when they order that junk, it gets me books into the classroom because I get points to cash in for books, so what ever will get my students to spend money so I can get more book into my classroom, more power to Scholastic!
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andi330
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Audiobooks are great for kids who get carsick reading or playing games too. My brother got carsick for years if he did anything in the car other than stare straight ahead or fall asleep. Audiobooks were a great way to keep us engaged without hearing the little words, "I'm gonna puke!"

You can get audiobooks fairly cheaply if you know how. Look in the sale area, especially at Books a Million, they tend to have unabridged books on sale for extremely low prices (I've gotten full length books on CD from them for $10). I also love being an Audible.com member. I can keep my entire library with me at all times on my iPod. Very convenient.

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Traceria
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You may also want to check your local library. Maryland has a great system that allows you to log in with your library card number to a particular site where you can download and listen (for two weeks) up to four books at a time for FREE. They also have pdf books and possibly videos of some sort (haven't gotten in those). In fact, some of of the books you are even allowed to burn to disc because they acquired rights to do so.

Why not look into it for you area? Worse case, you'd have to walk into a library and browse the audiobook section.

There are also some sites out there like simplyaudiobooks where you can rent them in Netflix fashion.

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andi330
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Oh, I get depressed about my library's audiobook collection around here. It's not horrible, in fact, compared to many smaller suburbs, the collection is probably quite good. Unfortunately, I grew up in Fairfax Co, VA which is the capitol of library system audiobook collections. There was a patron who passed away leaving the library system a large trust, intended specifically for the purchase and maintenance of the audiobook collection. He had been an avid reader and later in life started to lose his vision. Audiobooks were his refuge and he gave them back to the community when he passed away. As a result you could find almost any unabridged audiobook you wanted from the library, something that is not the case for almost any other system.
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Teshi
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quote:
Audio WITH visual is fine, but completely giving over to audio only gives me pause.
On the contrary, listening to stories without having pictures is a valuable skill because it develops the skills of turning verbal sentences into images without the help of pictures, something that is a very important skill for understanding the complexities of books. If you are a good reader, chances are you visualize the plot like a movie in your head. If you never figure out how to do this, it's much harder to follow the action and find it exciting.

A lot of kids who are poor readers don't have this skill down yet. Listening to stories like Peter and the Wolf and radio plays helps them to practice this. You can tell who's got it down because they get scared because they SEE the Wolf.

Most of the earliest recorded books are actually oral stories. They are meant to be spoken, not read. There is nothing that says stories are meant only to be read rather than told.

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Orincoro
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My great uncle was the pulp/western novelist Louis Lamour (the spelling of his name with an apostrophe is a divisive issue in the family), and we had an extensive collection of his "dramatizations" produced by, I think, blackstone audio, which is the same company that is associated with Stefan Rudnicki and Tor Books/ Ender's Game and other OSC selections. The recordings were usually one or two cassettes, and they combined narration with character dialogue, music, and sound effects to tell the stories. They are really a gem among audio presentations if you are interested in listening to them.

Anyway, my family had an extensive collection of them, and that is what we preferred to listen to on car trips. Also, the kids in the family would listen to these tapes at home for enjoyment. We would listen to the same ones over and over again, and that was really my first introduction to fixed listening as a form of entertainment. It led me to listen to audiobooks throughout my childhood and adult life, and introduced me to countless things I would not have spent the time to read in print.

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The Rabbit
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quote:
Originally posted by lobo:
Why do you have such strong feelings that scholastic HAS to only sell books? I mean half of their books are trash to start with (and always has been).

Because they are allowed to market through the schools? To me, the only reason that could justify scholastic distributing its catalog's in school is if the products are designed to promote the educational objectives of the school.
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Orincoro
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Don't many schools allow fast food companies to market through schools? Mine certainly did with Coke, McDonalds, Taco Bell, and other companies that "donated" food once a month.
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The Rabbit
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I don't know how it works now, but back when I was a student, the teacher passed out the scholastic catalogs, collected the order forms and money and then distributed the books when they came -- during class time. It was fundamentally different than donating brand name products to the school, being allowed to put up advertisements in the school halls or even being allowed to sell products at a school function. From my perspective as a child, the school was selling us the books the books in class. And I should add that while you didn't have to buy anything, the way the orders were handled created significant peer pressure. You definitely didn't want to be one of those kids who did get anything when the orders arrived.

The only way I can see that being at all justifiable is if the items being sold serve the educational mission of the school in a clear way. I think books do that. I think toys associate with the books don't.

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andi330
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I don't know if anyone here is a teacher that handles the Scholastic orders or not. My mother was the director of a preschool for years, and I watched her handle the orders for her school on a monthly basis. It's a real pain. First of all, those flimsy paper order forms come all stapled together in a book. You have to separate them and make sure the correct age groups are given the correct form. You have to distribute them and remind parents of when they are due, and you really have to make them due several days before they would really be due in order to account for the parents who turn them in late.

Then you have to consolidate the order, double and triple checking to make sure you haven't left anything out. Make a bank deposit and write one check for the entire order, and send it off to Scholastic. They process the order and a few weeks later you get a box full of books. I hope you didn't lose the individual order forms in the mean time, because now you have to take the original order forms (which you keep for your records) and separate these books into the individual orders and distribute them to the students who ordered.

Yes, teachers do this to promote reading, but mostly they are doing it because their classroom and/or school are getting credits that they can use to keep their classroom/school up to date apart from spending money in the budget or out of their own pockets (as many teachers do). For a non-profit organization such as my mother's school, these programs are even more important, because it is harder to afford new equipment when needed, and the scholastic credits can help to upkeep the school library, allowing money in the budget to be redirected into other areas that need it.

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Lostinspace
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quote:
Originally posted by andi330:
I don't know if anyone here is a teacher that handles the Scholastic orders or not. My mother was the director of a preschool for years, and I watched her handle the orders for her school on a monthly basis. It's a real pain. First of all, those flimsy paper order forms come all stapled together in a book. You have to separate them and make sure the correct age groups are given the correct form. You have to distribute them and remind parents of when they are due, and you really have to make them due several days before they would really be due in order to account for the parents who turn them in late.

Then you have to consolidate the order, double and triple checking to make sure you haven't left anything out. Make a bank deposit and write one check for the entire order, and send it off to Scholastic. They process the order and a few weeks later you get a box full of books. I hope you didn't lose the individual order forms in the mean time, because now you have to take the original order forms (which you keep for your records) and separate these books into the individual orders and distribute them to the students who ordered.

Yes, teachers do this to promote reading, but mostly they are doing it because their classroom and/or school are getting credits that they can use to keep their classroom/school up to date apart from spending money in the budget or out of their own pockets (as many teachers do). For a non-profit organization such as my mother's school, these programs are even more important, because it is harder to afford new equipment when needed, and the scholastic credits can help to upkeep the school library, allowing money in the budget to be redirected into other areas that need it.

There are processes in it that are making it easier. Scholastic now accepts the checks directly from the parents, so they write the checks to scholastic. I can make the orders online so and pay via credit card and then send in the checks that that parents sent in. I try to encourage parents to pay cash as it is much easier on me. I usually end up sending 2 order forms home per month and with a class of 19 kids usually have orders around $100 each time. This is great for me as I get lots of points and have bought a huge amount of books for my class library thanks to the purchases of my parents. Scholastic also now is setting up a way for parent to order online through the teacher, I have not set this up and figure I will wait until next year to do so, but I am excited to give it a try.
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Lisa
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quote:
Originally posted by ketchupqueen:
quote:
(I'm honestly not sure how Jack got to be a nickname for John.)
Via the French.
Really? How did John become Jacques? I thought Jean was John and Jacques was Jacob, no?
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theamazeeaz
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quote:
Originally posted by Orincoro:
theamazeeaz- if you think audiobooks are expensive, you just don't know how to get them at the right price. Virtually every title available can be had for about 10 dollars if you know the right source. You are a sucker if you buy them in the bookstore, I will say that.

Actually, the only audio book I've ever purchased was for 50 cents on a library discount rack. It was an abridged, two cassette version of Brave New World. and I thought it might be a unique way to go over the book (which yes, I did read) before the test (and no, I fell asleep about 30 minutes in- though I thought the book at some interesting effects). All the other audiobooks I've sampled, I've borrowed from the library, where I worked for three years.

My expensive comment was gleaned from bored Borders browsing- it's good to know the rabid fans who do pay aren't paying so much.

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andi330
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I absolutely loathe abridged audiobooks. They are usually poorly abridged, and I've found that they generally have poor readers too. The quality audiobooks are almost always unabridged.
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dawnmaria
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I have always LOVED Scholastic! I got so excited when my daughter brought home the order form this year! I didn't think they would get them in preschool, but I am so happy they do! I have created the Book Fairy. I let my daughter go through the forms and circle ones she may like. It keeps her occupied while I make dinner. She's 4, she's killing me! And I let her know if she's good or does something above and beyond, the Book Fairy may bring her something. I usually get 3 titles. One for just entertainment value and the others to help teach her to read. I am happy and proud to say that she read to me for the 1st time last night. One of the books from the phonics set. I even covered the pictures and made her read it to me again because I was sure it was from the pictures, but no it was all her! I love that she WANTS TO READ! I hope her little brother comes along after wanting to imitate her as well. Scholastic rocks for helping me keep her wanting books.
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Lostinspace
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That is awsome to hear Dawn! You have yourself a reader!
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MidnightBlue
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I always went through and circled a whole bunch of stuff, but my parents rarely every let me get them. I do remember getting the forms all the way up through 7th grade, though, and by that time I could sometimes buy them myself, or convince the language arts teacher to get the ones I wanted to read, to put in the classroom library.
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Traceria
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quote:
Originally posted by Teshi:
quote:
Audio WITH visual is fine, but completely giving over to audio only gives me pause.
On the contrary, listening to stories without having pictures is a valuable skill because it develops the skills of turning verbal sentences into images without the help of pictures, something that is a very important skill for understanding the complexities of books. If you are a good reader, chances are you visualize the plot like a movie in your head. If you never figure out how to do this, it's much harder to follow the action and find it exciting.

A lot of kids who are poor readers don't have this skill down yet. Listening to stories like Peter and the Wolf and radio plays helps them to practice this. You can tell who's got it down because they get scared because they SEE the Wolf.

Most of the earliest recorded books are actually oral stories. They are meant to be spoken, not read. There is nothing that says stories are meant only to be read rather than told.

Not to get all nit-picky, but I do want to clarify a couple things here since you are quoting me, Teshi. For one, I wasn't thinking of picture books exclusively. Obviously, I wasn't so clear on that. Also, Liz B called me out on my calculator example, which didn't really fit or help the point I was trying to make then. I acknowledged her good point and added belatedly upon reflection that I greatly enjoyed and got a lot out of listening to my parents, teachers, librarians, etc. read aloud when I was younger. Obviously, there's a lot of merit in them and auditory learning, which I completely overlooked in my initial reply.

Also, I am by no means anti-audiobook. If I were, I wouldn't be listening to one right this very moment. (The Shadow Rising, by the way.)

No hard feelings, just wanted to clarify, as said.

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