English 10 students begin reading ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ Sophomores will create record a specific diary entry to create an audiobook

Preparing to record an audio file, sophomore Amir Rostamzadeh is contemplating the emotion he wants to add.The recordings were due on Monday, Mar. 1st. “It’s an interesting and engaging way to read,” sophomore Amir Rostamzadeh said. “It keeps my attention, unlike traditionally reading with the class.” Photo Credit: Amir Rostamzadeh

Students in Cathy Sabol’s English 10 Honors class are switching it up and are creating an audiobook to begin their new read: “The Diary of Anne Frank.”

“I wanted a refreshing way for students to read in class,” Sabol said. “I was thinking about what else we could do since I’ve already done, the part where I asked for volunteers to read, or where I picked people. So I thought, ‘What if they each pre-recorded a part?’ This would give students the ability to go back and record until it’s perfect.”

Students were required to individually record a selected portion from the book, and submit through Canvas.

“I like how it’s engaging and creative,” sophomore Amir Rostamzadeh said. “Instead of reading aloud in class where only a few students participate, this audiobook requires all of us to do the work to make it interesting. The sudden rises in tone or the way we interpret the words make listening to others more fun.”

Unlike traditional group reading sessions, students have the liberty to go all out with the specific characters and have the freedom to record their given section using Canvas or any type of recording software of their choice.

“The most challenging part about reading anything aloud in class is that I get disinterested very quickly,” Rostamzadeh said. “With the audiobook, it’s the uniqueness that comes with each recording that really grabs my attention. It’s not only fun listening to other people, but also fun when you’re listening to your own.”

Sabol is choosing “The Diary of Anne Frank” because it presents a theme of optimism even in the face of danger.

“There’s suspense, there’s reality, but there’s also joy,” Sabol said. “She’s really real, and she has real conflicts with the people she lives with, but her overarching view is one of optimism.”

Utilizing the submitted recordings, Sabol is planning on combining them into a singular audiobook and having students listen to them in class. 

“It’ll be cool and funny to see how all my other classmates decide to read their section,” sophomore Jacob Bogel said. “There are some students that put their soul into reading, and others that don’t. You can tell the difference pretty fast, but it’s engaging nonetheless.”