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Drop Everything and Read (D.E.A.R.) with a FREE Qwizdom OKTOPUS Lesson


“The MORE that you READ, the more THINGS you will KNOW. The MORE you LEARN, the more PLACES you’ll GO!” -- Dr. Seuss

April is Drop Everything and Read Month (DEAR; official day is Friday, April 12th) and Qwizdom OKTOPUS has free lessons on concepts and skills related to reading. One such lesson is 'Elements of Fiction and Nonfiction' which differentiates the two types. The lesson comes with a partner set of questions that serves as a quiz or review of the concepts learned. Annotate and add to the lesson using OKTOPUS tools for interactive boards and panels. The complete lesson is Click-Play simple! Access this free lesson, and more free lessons, by following the instructions below to create a free account:

Step 1: Create a free online account

  1. Open OKTOPUS. Click on the settings icon. Select ‘Log in To My Account.’
  2. Click ‘Not Registered.’
  3. Complete the form, including state, district, and school.
  4. If you have a product key, click ‘Yes’ and enter the key. If not, click ‘No.’
  5. Agree to terms and click ‘Submit.’
  6. Click the ‘activate account’ link in the verification email.
  7. Re-open OKTOPUS, go to the settings icon. Select ‘Log in To My Account.’ Enter username (email) and password to setup in registration.
  8. Check the ‘Save Credentials’ box.

Step 2: Search for Lesson

Now that you’ve created an OKTOPUS account and are logged in, you are able to search and download from the thousands of free lessons available in Language Arts, Math, Science, and Social Studies. For the purposes of D.E.A.R, let’s search “fiction.”

  1. Click on the tools icon. Click on the ‘Standards Tools’ button, then select ‘Lessons’ from the menu.
  2. Click on the ‘Lessons’ icon.
  3. In the search field, type “fiction.” Find “Elements of Fiction and Nonfiction (Lesson)” then click ‘Download’ and save the lesson to your PC. Then, download and save “Elements of Fiction and Nonfiction (Questions)”.
  4. In OKTOPUS, go to the file icon, select ‘Open’, and browse to the newly downloaded activity -- Elements of Fiction and Nonfiction (Lesson).qap (then follow with Elements of Fiction and Nonfiction (Questions).qap). Select and open the lesson. Click here to download:


Step 3: Present and Poll

  1. It is always helpful to review any lesson before presenting to the class, but this lesson is ready to go even if you don’t! Did I mention it is click-play simple?
  2. To present the lesson, click on the settings icon. Select ‘Start Session’ and begin the lesson. This setup will include a quick tutorial on how students can join in the lesson using their devices.
  3. Navigate through the lesson which compares and contrasts fiction and non-fiction, including identifying the type of book based on titles (a common test question!).
  4. At the end of the lesson, click the settings icon and select ‘End Session.’ If you want to continue with the question set, simply go to the file icon and select ‘Open’ and look for the question set. Repeat the steps for starting, navigating through, and ending a session.
  5. Of course, you can always ask impromptu questions by using the Vote Tool. Click on the ‘Standards Tool’ button and select ‘Vote Tool’ from the menu. From ‘Question Tools’, select a question type. Polling questions foster engagement and boost discussion. For more on how to set up a presentation and question types, go to
  6. Save any annotations made in the lesson simply by selecting “Save as” at the end of the session.

So, this month, as you encourage your students to READ, READ, READ why not take advantage of what Qwizdom OKTOPUS has to offer! If you want to know more, go to and sign up for a free 30-day trial.

Categories: Audience Response

Tags: edtech , elearning , free lesson , student engagement , active learning , reading lessons , collaboration

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