Connected from the Start

Connected from the Start

Global Learning in the Primary Grades — a compelling case for connecting our youngest students to the world.

$12.95 Instant Access

Connected from the Start

In Connected from the Start: Global Learning in the Primary Grades, primary teacher Kathy Cassidy makes a compelling case for connecting our youngest students to the world, using the transformative power of Internet tools and technologies.

Her well-balanced text presents both the rationale for connecting students “from the start” and the how-to details and examples teachers need to involve children in grades K-3 in using blogs, Twitter, Skype and other social media to become true global learners.


This highly interactive digital book — featuring dozens of color photos, six student-centered videos, and hundreds of live links to helpful downloads and outside resources — invites the reader right into Kathy’s cozy and connected classroom.

In Kathy’s classroom, kids are talking live with students “down under,” swapping video with peers in Greece, and using personal blogs to create digital portfolios that document their growth and achievement for parents, families and a worldwide audience.

Connected from the Start

This digital book includes:

Welcome & Why

For this lesson, we’ll look at why you would want to have a connected classroom and start thinking about doing it safely.


How can you use Skype to create a global learning environment while you work on curricular outcomes?


Blogging & Blogs as Digital Portfolios


In this lesson, we’ll look at classroom blogs and at student blogs and the power and potential they have.


Twitter? In the classroom? Let’s look at why and how to make it an incredible learning tool.

Other Possibilities for Connecting

We’ll look at other tools that can make your classroom a globally connected one.

Getting Started Connecting

So many options. Where do I start? In this lesson we’ll look at some practical ways to begin.


Multiple Formats

You’ll receive this eBook in PDF, Kindle and ePub formats for easy reading on any device.

What they’re saying

Kathy Cassidy has become a shining example of what one teacher with some grit, curiosity and passion can do to realize the powerful potential of computing and technology in the classroom. And she does it with 6 and 7 year olds.

Dean Shareski

Community Manager, Discovery Education Canada

I’m really impressed. While there’s tonnes in here for teachers, I think it would also be a great read/resource for parents not only in terms of understanding what kinds of technologies might be appropriate for younger children to be learning with and why they might be using them in schools, but also for those parents who want to engage their children in connecting with the world from home, whether home-schoolers or just avid connected learners.

I really love that the e-book itself is created in such an interactive manner; the format of the book really lends itself to providing the reader with a window into Cassidy’s classroom and makes the learning inside visible. For example, you can watch videos of Grade One students working on numeracy concepts by stacking Oreos, talking about what they are doing and what they have learned, and then read comments left on their blog by others who watched.

The writing is authentic, engaging and very practical, explaining such things as how to share with parents what is possible, and how to proceed with blogging with primary students in a way that is both safe and effective. There’s so much more…I’d recommend you snag a copy for yourself to see how Cassidy has used technology to make learning transparent, authentic and connected for her early years students.

Janne Edney

I can’t say enough about what an invaluable resource for teachers I found Connected From the Start: Global Learning in the Primary Grades to be. Author and primary teacher Kathy Cassidy has included something for everyone, whether you are just beginning to find ways to connect your students to the world via the Internet and social media, or you have experience using tools like Skype, Twitter, and blogs in the classroom.

In addition to discovering how to provide this incredible learning experience for your students, you’ll learn how to bring experts into your classroom via the Internet, hold interactive student-led conferences, and help your kids develop public digital portfolios.

Patti Grayson


This was an amazing book with tons of authentic work done by primary children! The learning described in this book is inspiring!

Sherrell Stepp

Instead of giving you a persuasive essay about why you should buy this book (and you should), I will share two ways Kathy’s work has impacted what I do as an elementary principal and literacy leader.

1. Digital Portfolios: In the beginning of the school year, Dropbox was the tool selected for my teachers to curate student writing. The plan was to share these web-based folders with parents as the year progressed, so everyone could see student growth over time.

One problem was (and still is) that the teachers are doing the work. Although Dropbox is a great tool for online storage of many types of media, we have found it a bit time-consuming for documenting student writing. The teacher has to take a picture, upload it to the student’s file, and organize it chronologically.

After reading Kathy’s book, I realized that a great digital portfolio tool was right in front of me: a blog. She has her students, as young as six years, regularly post online. The students’ content is not only given a broader audience, it solicits comments from other teachers, peers and family members.

This practical application in a primary classroom is powerful. It comes from someone who has been there and done that, and not from an administrator (like myself) or from a technologist that lacks that meaningful and authentic experience.

2. Collaborative Writing: I had been thinking for a while how I might show 4th grade students how to share their writing with an audience beyond our school walls. After reading Kathy’s book, it sparked the idea of using Google apps to make this happen.

We plan to have the students write a narrative based on one of the fourteen scenes from Chris Van Allsburg’s The Mysteries of Harris Burdick. Students can use Google Drive to create these stories, and post them on one Google Site. It would be maintained by educators from both schools, even though we are hundreds of miles apart. Teachers would show students how to comment effectively on another student’s writing. The benefits of these practices are a broader audience and a more authentic purpose to their work.

Matt Renwick

Principal, Author

Kathy Cassidy’s newly released e-book is an absolute must-read for elementary educators. This media-rich book is filled with practical tips, years of experience, and honest writing from a teacher’s perspective. She opens teachers’ eyes while calming their fears about seamlessly integrating technology into classrooms, even in the earliest grades. Authentic learning is the focus of her work, and she inspires us to do more with whatever we have. This is a book you won’t want to miss!

Laura Komos

Turn your classroom into a global classroom.

Teach digital citizenship, provide your students with an authentic audience and engage your learners.

Get expert guidance from primary grades educator and author Kathy Cassidy. Just $12.95 for instant access.

Need to pay with a purchase order? Or maybe you want to enroll more than one teacher, your staff, your whole school or district? Or maybe you want to create a custom course bundle? We can do that! Contact us and we’ll get you set up in a hurry.

Want a little extra support in getting your students connected?

Check out the Connected from the Start self-paced eCourse!

About The Author

Kathy Cassidy

Kathy Cassidy

Author, Primary Grades Teacher

Kathy Cassidy has been teaching for more than 20 years and is currently a grade one teacher in Moose Jaw, SK, Canada. Since 2005, her classroom has been connecting with the world through a classroom blogstudent blogs, Skype, Twitter and other means. Outside of school, Kathy speaks internationally and maintains a professional blog. Her first book isConnected From the Start: Global Learning in the Primary Grades. Kathy has won several awards, including the Canadian Innovative Teacher Award from Microsoft, the Canadian Regional Award for Reading and Technology from the ILA and the Kay L. Bitter Award from ISTE. She is an Apple Distinguished Educator.

Frequently Asked Questions

How is the material presented?

This is a digital book. You’ll immediately be able to download it to your phone, device, or laptop.

When will I have access to the content?

You’ll get instant access right after we securely process your payment. You then have access to the material forever.

How do you handle payments?

Payments are securely handled through Stripe. We accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or American Express. If you need to pay with a purchase order, enroll in bulk, or want us to create a custom bundle for you, contact us.

Can I buy this book for multiple people like a school or district?

Absolutely. We give significant discounts for bulk registrations. Please contact us to make an arrangement for your staff, school, or district.

Money Back Guarantee

You might be concerned that these courses won’t work for you. We get that. We offer a no risk, 60-day money back guarantee. If you don’t like the courses, if you feel like you already know the material, or if you just change your mind, we will refund 100% of your money for the first 60 days upon completion of an exit interview so we can learn how to make it better next time around. Do you have questions about this offering? Please contact us!

Money-Back Guarantee

Video Interview

We spoke to Powerful Learning Practice author and primary grades teacher Kathy Cassidy today about her bestselling book Connected from the Start. In this video, Kathy shares why getting young students “connected from the start” is so important, favorite stories of connecting and serendipitous learning from her classroom over the years, and practical tips for teachers who want to incorporate technology into their own teaching practice.

What they’re saying

I have always admired teachers who are able to utilize technology in their classrooms to open up the world of learning for students. I want to be one of those teachers. With the new book by Kathy Cassidy, “Connected From the Start,” I think I finally can.

As a first grade teacher, my students’ use of technology has been limited to educational games and websites, with a little word processing thrown in. I often wondered how I could engage and involve young students in more meaningful uses of technology. Kathy’s book shows even the most novice techie how to get teachers and students connected and engaged in activities that promote communication, collaboration, sharing of information, and making learning public.

Connected From the Start provides readers with step-by-step instructions on how to enter the world of Skype and Twitter, how to engage young students in blogging, and how to use student blogs to not only share learning, but to document the progress of their learning.

I highly recommend the e-book with all its hyperlinks to Kathy’s own websites, videos, and suggested online resources. The hyperlinks lead to real artifacts and resources that help readers understand each topic and see how they work in action.

Connected From the Start is a simple and engaging how-to manual written for teachers by a teacher, and the best part is that you won’t have to go it alone! Kathy provides her personal accounts and blogs so that readers may post questions and provide feedback. I cannot wait to get my primary kids connected!

Jane Ching Fung

First Grade Teacher, Los Angeles Board of Directors, National Commission on Teaching and America's Future

I purchased and read this book on the recommendation of a friend this summer and I am so glad that I did. So many of my personal beliefs and values about technology integration in the primary classroom were validated.

Kathy Cassidy has created some fantastic learning experiences for her students that are easily replicable in any classroom. It is amazing to watch the embedded videos and see the kinds of things that her students are doing at such a young age. Kathy is truly an inspiration.

If you have an interest in providing your students with learning experiences that extend beyond the classroom walls, I would highly recommend this book. Learn to appropriately utilize tools like Skype, Twitter, and blogging in the classroom. You won’t look back!

Kate Peila

I would like to share my review of the eBook; Connected from the Start: Global Learning in the Primary Grades by Kathy Cassidy.

Cassidy writes her argument for this very clearly and states, “If I can do it, so can you”! After reading the remainder of the introduction, you can’t help but want to know more about her “journey” to connect her first grade classroom with the world. In my opinion, this book is a must have for teachers of all grade levels. I was skeptical at first in purchasing the electronic version since I am keen to a good old fashion text book, however I was quickly impressed at what the eBook offers.

One strength I noticed immediately was the working links Cassidy included throughout the pages. These links add a plethora of information and visuals to this already well written resource. Another clear strength this book offers is the personal and direct “voice” Cassidy has as an author. It reads clearly and explains her experience with technology in the classroom with ease and approachability. There is no need to dissect and analyze each paragraph because the information is direct and user friendly, for lack of a better term.

In this book, Kathy Cassidy successfully provides her first hand experience with opening her classroom up to the world through the use of technology and leaves a reader ready and wanting to do the same.

Melissa Lambo

Kathy’s book takes a look at the journey of connecting young learners with the world. In clear, gentle language Kathy explores connecting through skype, blogging, digital portfolios, twitter, and wikis. Within each section, in addition to comprehensive text, she provides loads of links to websites, blogposts, and videos. You truly get to peek into her classroom.

Kathy starts by stressing how important it is to teach our children how to be safe on-line instead of limiting their access. And that access to an abundance of technology is not needed to get started on this journey. A lot of what Kathy talks about can be done with just one device with internet access.

Kathy is a truly gifted educator. Her book provides many examples of ways to connect a primary classroom with the world. It is an inspiring read, and one that should be read by all primary teachers.

K. Lirenman

Get your students connected.

Look at the why and how of using tools such as blogs, Twitter and Skype to make a shift possible in your K-5 classroom.

Get instant access for just $12.95

Need to pay with a purchase order? Or maybe you want to enroll more than one teacher, your staff, your whole school or district? Or maybe you want to create a custom course bundle? We can do that! Contact us and we’ll get you set up in a hurry.