Shmoop is a neat website that has a lot of potential as a study resource for students of literature and US History. On the literature front, Shmoop provides condensed summaries of novels, short stories, and poetry. Included in the novel summaries that I read were artists’ renderings of the main characters and in some cases maps of the story’s setting.
The US History part of Shmoop is divided into themes and major events in US History. Everything appears chronologically in Shmoop’s US History study guide. If a student is not sure which theme or event to look in for a particular term, they can use the Shmoop search box to find it.
Shmoop offers more than just summaries of information. If students create an account and log-in, they can use the integrated dictionary to find the meaning of any word in the content they’re reading. Students can also create folders where they can store sticky notes of information they record while reading a Shmoop article. There is also a discussion feature although it was not working when I tried it earlier today.
Applications for Education
Shmoop could be a good reference to supplement the reading that students do for your courses. Shmoop’s summaries are not nearly long enough to be a replacement for students to soly rely on instead of doing the assigned reading. As a frame of reference, Shmoop’s summaries are far shorter than those found in Cliffs Notes or Spark Notes.