Epic and News-o-matic!
Epic is an online reading app that allows students to choose from a hundreds of books, both fiction and non-fiction. Each book can be read online. Some of the books include a read-to-me feature that will read the book to them if you're looking for a great way to increase the number of titles you have for listen to reading. Educators can create a free account that will give their students access to all of these great titles (Olivia and Scaredy Squirrel are just a couple) to read in class. You must create an account and then you will have to put your username and password on each device, but after the initial set-up, it is smooth sailing. I downloaded the app and put my info into 20 devices in about 20 minutes. My students LOVE it! I recently used it to read a book about penguins to the whole class during read-aloud. Such a fun way for them to see the pictures on a big screen with high quality resolution. No more hearing, "I can't see!" as you are reading from the book. Most books are appropriate for grades K-3 but it's still worth it's still worth it for upper grade teachers to search for books for your specific needs. Find out more at Epic's website.
Read the news of the day with this amazing tool. There are five news stories published daily. Students can interact with each story by using the interactive toolbar on the right hand side to pull up maps, check facts, photos and videos related to the news stories, or even have the story read to them. There is also an Act button which suggests ways they might act on a story (PYP?). And since stories change daily, it is sure to hold students' interest and keep them up with current events. The school edition is $5. I'm sure we could find the money for that with some creative fundraising. I think it is much cheaper than Time for Kids or Scholastic News. Read more at the Press 4 Kids website.