Are you a planner? The school year is almost over for me. I can’t help but think ahead to next year and all that I will improve upon with my next group of students. Reading, in particular, will get a lot of attention from me during the summer. Fortunately, I’ve found a great resource to help my students improve their reading comprehension – ReadWorks.
ReadWorks to the Rescue
I first learned about ReadWorks from my amazing co-teacher and friend, Lori. She often tapped into the website for articles she could use with her students receiving special services. At first it was just one more intriguing website for me to investigate and it was quite some time before I got around to checking it out. Don’t be like me – visit ReadWorks and see for yourself what a great resource it is for teachers and students! ReadWorks is a non-profit organization whose mission is to improve teacher effectiveness and student achievement in reading comprehension. They do this by providing free content through relevant, authentic texts both nonfiction and literary.
Sync with Google Classroom
What changed my mind was learning that all my students would be receiving their own Chromebook. Once I knew that was happening, I wanted to maximize the power of that technology in ways that genuinely improved student learning. I just about jumped with joy when I realized I could simply sync ReadWorks with my existing Google Classroom. My students simply signed in with their Google account info and we were in business. I didn’t even have to create a roster by tediously typing in each student’s name. ReadWorks loaded my students’ names from our Google Classroom.
Teaching the Expectations
When first starting with ReadWorks, I recommend reading an article together as a class at least one time, but preferably more. My goal is to use the I Do, We Do, You Do strategy for introducing students to the website. Once students know the tools and my expectations, we will read an article a week including vocabulary and comprehension questions. Many of the articles will have a connection with our science and/or social studies standards for added content exposure.
Comprehension Tools and Content
Check out the following resources from ReadWorks to learn more about how you can use this website to increase your own students’ comprehension.