Reading Intervention Resources

Maintained by: Kristie Bourdoulous
K-6 Curriculum Intervention Specialist
Instructional Services Department

Professional Growth Goal

September 2011


Bartleby Volume 1

Try Bartleby Volume 1 for a Guided Discovery of the iPad. The app requires that students carefully read the text, problem solve, and interact with the iPad in a number of ways. Be prepared. Some of the story pages are quite tricky. Work your way through the whole volume - prior to working with a group of students! Best of all - Bartleby is free!

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Fountas & Pinell Prompting Guide 1

The Fountas and Pinnell Prompting Guide provides teachers with explicit cues to use when explicitly teaching, prompting, and reinforcing skills with readers. Prompts include Early Reading Behaviors, Searching for and Using Information (MSV), Solving Words, Maintaining Fluency, Composing Sentences, Early Writing Behaviors, Verbal Path for Letter Formation, Constructing Words, Conventions, and Confirming Word Knowledge. Well worth the money, but expensive $9.99.

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October 2011

Mad Libs

The Mad Libs app reinforces student knowledge of parts of speech (noun, verb, adjective, and more). A great motivator that engages students in grammar objectives and allows them to have fun at the same time. A great way to reward students for their hard work! The free version has enough stories to get you started. For more stories - there is a charge!

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November 2011

ABC Spelling Magic

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The ABC Spelling Magic app series offers a variety of interactive practice activities focusing on phonics elements. Phonic skills include consonant blends, short vowels, long vowel patterns and more. This app reinforces the sounds of letters and how to construct words through a synthetic approach to phonics. A great app for reinforcing the Fountas & Pinnell Phonics program.

Build a Word Express
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The Build a Word Express app allows the instructor to create their own lists of words. You may choose to include grade level sight words, spelling unit words, or lessons for Making Words, by Patricia Cunningham. The app features a practice and quiz mode for various levels of support. The instructor records their voice and selects from a range of settings for the perfect list of words!

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Create your own presentations using the Keynote app. This app will be easy to use for those proficient in PowerPoint. Students have enjoyed previewing academic and content vocabulary, viewing text related photographs to build background knowledge, and reading sight word lists for automaticity and fluency. These presentations can be emailed to your account and printed for further practice in the classroom and at home! One of my Tier III intervention student has now mastered 98/100 first grade sight words thanks to her daily practice reading her words from both the iPad and take home list printed from the iPad!

Chart Maker
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The Chart Maker app is a powerful app for making scatterplots, line graphs, pie charts, and more. Make graphic representations of your students' progress to share with data teams and parents. You input the data and this easy to use app completes the calculations and creates the visual. Completed charts save as a photograph and can be easily accessed and shared. What a great way to make a visual representation of student achievement for teachers, parents, and students to monitor and discuss! Always ready at your fingertips!

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December 2011

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Access an enormous amount of [[|Benchmark Literacy]] instructional materials that can be easily downloaded for small group or individual instruction. Download the PDF poster, texts, and fluency items into Notability and have the instant capability to take notes, underline, and highlight important information. The combination of Notability and [[|Benchmark Literacy]] allows students to interact with fiction and nonfiction text while determining importance, analyzing story elements, and much more! Drop level a year or more for instant access to materials for comprehension interventions! Don't forget about Reading A-Z fluency passages. Open the PDFs in Notability and students can mark the text in many ways. "Scoop the Text" to encourage reading in long, meaningful phrases. Use the highlighter tool to mark the punctuation marks to draw students attention to short pauses, long pauses, raising their voice for questions, and adding excitement to their reading. Save the document to DropBox so you can print - instant student accountability!

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January 2012

iCard Sort
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My new favorite app! The iCard Sort app has so many great features. The user can put individual pieces of information (spelling words, letters, concepts) on notecards for students to sort. You can add headings (on different color cards) and have students practice categorizing words by their spelling pattern. Leave out the headings and ask students to engage in an open sort. For users with multiple iPads, the Beam and Blast feature enables the user to set up the word sort one time and Beam the content to one other iPad or Blast the content to multiple iPads. For student accountability, take a photo of the completed sort by simultaneously pressing the home and power keys. This will send a picture of their final product to the Photos app!

**Booksy - Free Edition**
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I love Booksy! Booksy has leveled fiction and nonfiction science literacy leveled readers with features that include voice recording, audio playback, comprehension checks, and even progress monitoring and student recordings sent directly to your email! Most importantly, the books are beautiful. The books support readers and the kids can tap on any word to have the word read aloud to them. Students earn stars, awards, and trophies by taking the reading comprehension quizzes. In addition to the free titles, users can purchase additional titles for $0.99. Up to three students can be tracked in this edition. But, great news...the School Edition of Booksy has just been released. For a total of $9.99 you get all the titles: Humpback Whales, Chimpanzees, Emperor Penguins, Insects, Solar System, Elephants, Bacteria, In a Jam and coming soon...Dinosaurs, Exploring Mars. They are not leveled by DRA2 or F&P, but the Level 1 books contain 250-350 words for students primary students reading on their own or can be used to motivate struggling readers with a comprehension focus.

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February 2012

LAZ Level J Library - $6.99

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Leveled texts the way we know them! Even though these are not my favorite, they are one of the only true leveled texts I can find in the app store. Each library contains 12 fiction or nonfiction texts that students will recognize from their classrooms. The texts include an interactive glossary containing definitions built right into the page. Users tap the left of the screen to go back, the right of the screen to move forward, and tapping the center of the screen will bring you to the interactive glossary. Students will need time practicing these iPad skills - otherwise they become easily frustrated as they move through the pages. Also, once you open the text you must read (or flip) to the end to get back to the leveled library. You can access a free text at every level through the app store, but search carefully...LAZ level the only way to find these texts...unless you follow my link above!! :)

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It's time to start reading the real e-books! Even though it takes patience and determination downloading a true piece of children's literature into iBooks, it is still the way to go. Still requiring a sense of leveled texts, I sought guidance from the Scholastic Book Wizard for titles, themes, levels and topics. Then I took that list to the app store and made my purchase. Not every title I was looking for was available, but eventually I found a few that I was happy with. The Stories Julian Tells is a set of compiled short stories perfect for making connections, inferring, and is filled with figurative language. With just one iPad this can be a reader response station. With addtional iPads a motivating guided reading group. Students can use the iBooks features to highlight text evidence, use pop-up post it notes to code the text, and more. Reader Response & CMT preparation has never been so interactive!
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March 2012

African Mammals Field Guide HD App
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Building Background Knowledge for Struggling Readers
Students are constantly confronted with new information, particularly once they progress to the upper elementary grades and transition from “learning to read” to “reading to learn” (Chall, 1983). To read to learn effectively students need to integrate new material into their existing knowledge base, construct new understanding, and adapt existing conceptions and beliefs as needed. Proficiency at these tasks is essential to literacy (Davis & Winek, 1989; Squire, 1983; Weisberg, 1988). However, students who do not have sufficient background knowledge will struggle in the language arts curriculum and are at risk for reading failure. This month's iPad worked focused on building backgound knowledge for struggling third and fourth grade readers to improve the students' abilities to comprehend and summarize nonfiction text.
I began the unit by pretesting the students' abilities to summarize nonfiction text and used an Alphabet Brainstorm activity to survey the students' background knowledge of the African Savannah. Using the DRA Nonfiction Summary Rubric, I quickly found most students identified limited details, used exact statements, and were unable to use headings to effectively summarize the text. We engaged in a group activity that required students to provide one "African Savannah" related word for each letter of the alphabet. The students were able to produce only 6 "thematic words" across the group. I immediately realized using the African Mammals HD app by dotnamedstudios was essential to increase background knowledge of the geography, animal types, and movement patterns of mammals would be critical to the students' abilities to comprehend the upcoming National Geographic Windows on Literacy text. I coupled the use of this app with direct instruction in summarizing text using the THUMB strategy, required students to reflect on and score their own summaries and the summaries of others, and encouraged the charting of student progress. The kids loved referencing the informational app before reading each chapter, they increased their background knowledge, and the map of mammal locations was a perfect application of the nonfiction text features skills they will need for the upcoming DRA2 assessment. Most importantly, student summaries of the three text chapters showed a deep comprehension of text.

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April 2012

Fluency Instruction using Notability & Reading A-Z

This month, I was able to develop a one to one fluency intervention program for a struggling third grade reader. I used a combination of leveled reading passages accessed through a Reading A-Z subscription, the Notability app, and direct instruction in improving reading rate. The process was simple and required little maintenance after the initial setup. I entered the Reading A-Z website though Safari on the iPad. I selected several independent reading passages and opened them directly into the Notability app. After a timing an initial read completed by the student, the student charted his CWPM rate and I provided direct instruction in the area of fluency. Using a stylus, the student scooped meaningful phrases to help improve his reading rate and comprehension of text. During a second read, the student recorded himself reading the passage. Then, the student listened to himself read as he followed along with the passage. The student identified areas of strength and areas for improvment. After numerous minilessons on heeding punctuation, scooping phrases, scanning ahead, and lots of practice the student began to make marked improvement in reading rate. Please take a look at the student's work and hear a recording of his excellent reading!

Recording (click the play button to listen)


Student Work

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