Monday, August 25, 2014

What's up shorty???

So many standards, so little time....with so much to cover, I am often asked for short texts that can be read in little to no time, so that focus can be placed on the standards. Excerpts from my favorite novels and short stories are easy to find, however, often too much time is needed to build schema or retell the story. My teachers need sets of text that are high interest and do not require a lot of background knowledge. So here are my go to sources for short reads....

ReadWorks has K-8 leveled reading passages for comprehension practice.

Odell Education has units with clickable resources for texts sets.

Reading resources from IRA president, Maureen McLaughlin.

Here are some Wonder Inducing picture books perfect for nonfiction texts.

Here are 14 quick reads, perfect for upper high school students.

Here are sets of text grades K-12 from Louisiana Believes.

For nonfiction, here are my faves:

NewsELA: Current Events

Digital Nonfiction Text Sets from Reading and Writing Project

Leonard Pitts from the Miami Herald (a great blend of genres)

And lastly, but not leastly, Kelly Gallagher's "Article of the Week".

What are some of your favorite quick reads?


Saturday, August 16, 2014

Chrome Tools for Struggling Readers

Struggling Readers My mind is a blur with the past two weeks of information. I have learned all kinds of school management systems, analyzing data, writing curriculum, and trying to figure it all out. Despite all of these unique trainings, one issue kept bubbling up. How can we help struggling readers? Struggling readers need more interaction with text, may need background knowledge ahead of time, and may need assistance with vocabulary. I have a few Chrome tools I feel could help:

Chrome Extensions:

 Google Dictionary: self -explanatory, except it is right the on your extensions bar

Save to Google Drive: Students come across helpful graphic organizers (such as those from Eduplace and can save those directly to their Google Drive.

Email this page: If students have email, they can simply click on this and email any page.

Note Anywhere - This is a floating sticky note system. Students can make post-its and review them at anytime. 

Buffer - This extension allows students to share content to almost any social media.

 Evernote Clearly - Remove any distractions from online texts, such as newspaper articles.

 Chrome Speak - Simply right click on any text on any site and this will read to you.

 And for videos - Turn off the Lights! Use this extension to darken everything except the video, which is helpful with often distracting YouTube video suggestions.

 Spritzer: A great extension that allows the reader to skim the text at a faster rate.

 Please feel free to add any tools you find helpful for struggling readers!