Now more than ever, people with learning and visual disabilities are flourishing in the classroom, launching productive careers and becoming assets in their communities. This blog spotlights remarkable individuals who demonstrate that having a visual or print disability is no barrier to educational success.
August 8, 2022 by Learning Ally
As a mother of two, Allison Peck has worn many hats. When her oldest child was diagnosed with dyslexia, her career path took a sharp turn. Now, Peck is a licensed dyslexia specialist in the state of Texas, a certified academic language therapist, and a structured literacy dyslexia specialist.
As both a parent and a specialist, Peck brings a uniquely personal perspective to her field. This year, she shared her experience with the Learning Ally community at our digital conference “Spotlight on Dyslexia” (#SPOD22). “My goal is to share insights and resources that I found invaluable in my journey as an educator and a mom”.
Here are the top 10 tips she shared with us:
For more resources, as well as our full catalog of digital books, become a member and your child will access the only app specifically designed for students who struggle with reading.
By Michael Manzi
July 18, 2022 by Learning Ally
Learning isn't just for the classroom.
For many kids, after the summer bell rings, learning doesn’t happen at all.
Summer reading loss is steep -- especially for marginalized children and adolescents. Studies show that children lose significant knowledge in reading and math during summer break — approximately two months of reading skills and 2.6 months of math computational skills — which tends to have a snowball effect as they experience subsequent skill loss each year, leading to decreased reading and math proficiency.
Teachers also lose precious instruction time reteaching information students have already learned. Research shows that teachers may take an average of six weeks each year in the fall to reteach material that was forgotten over the summer.
Turn summer skills slide into summer reading pride
As a member of Learning Ally, students can participate in our Summer Reading Together program. We are in alignment with the Collaborative Summer Library Program and libraries across the country. We’ve pulled together some of our favorite stories to align with the 2022 Oceans of Possibilities summer reading theme. Check out these titles for Elementary School, Middle School, and High School.
It's easy to participate!
Teachers can assign audiobooks for students and students can select their own. There are downloadables and printables to make participation easy and to motivate students to read. You can use a template letter to describe the program to parents. There are certificates for reading, sample lesson plans, progress tracking calendars, and prizes!
This year, participants have fun art projects and you-tube videos inspired by the books and Ocean of Possibilities.
Recognition and Prizes
Each month, four winners are selected to win prizes. At the end of the summer, four overall winners will win big ($100 gift cards) for reading the most audiobooks across all three summer months, and for the most days they spent reading.
We get so excited to learn about the clever ways teachers and parents are motivating children to read, while building skills, and having fun!
Want to learn what other schools and districts are doing? Check out this awesome summer reading program of the East Orange School District in New Jersey.
Learn more about Learning Ally’s Summer Reading Together program!
Categories: Activities, Audiobook Library, Education & Teaching, General, Reading Champions, Students, Uncategorized
June 9, 2022 by Learning Ally
For Immediate Release
June 9, 2022 - Princeton, NJ – Learning Ally, a national nonprofit with a mission of “literacy for all” in U.S. schools, has announced the student winners of its 2022 National Achievement Awards.
The National Achievement Awards is a component of the organization’s Whole Child Literacy approach to ensure more students with reading deficits achieve mastery of critical literacy skills informed by the science of reading, cognitive and environmental factors, and social and emotional learning, with the support of Learning Ally’s seven-time award-winning Audiobook Solution. Each student recipient receives a $3,000 to $6,000 endowed scholarship named for two longtime advocates of the organization – Marion Huber and Mary P. Oenslager.
For more than 60 years, their families continue their legacy to provide financial support. The program rewards students in high school and higher education who overcame great obstacles to achieve extraordinary academic progress, promote self-advocacy, and provide community service to others.
Dr. Terrie Noland, Vice President of Learning Ally said, "Each year, we feel especially proud to honor these exemplary students, and to carry on the mission of the two women who saw a great need for education equity in schools long ago. Students selected for the National Achievement Awards are exceptional role models. They clearly demonstrate extraordinary achievements given the right skills, resources, and emotional fortitude. They lift us up, and reshape our expectations of what students with learning challenges can and will achieve.”
Recipients of the 2022 Marion Huber Learning Through Listening Award (LTL):
Thomas J. Rayburn, Madison, AL
Ella Doerr, Avon, NC
Samantha Bachofen, Waterford, WI
May Hopkins, Oakland, CA
Recipient of the 2022 Mary P. Oenslager Scholastic Achievement Award (SAA):
Tatiana Clautaire, Spring Valley, NY
Winners of this award are selected by an esteemed National Selection Committee who are champions of student success. To learn more about each winner, visit learningally.org/naa.
Educators and parents working with high school students with blindness or visual impairments or learning disabilities who graduate in the years of 2021-2023 and first-year college students can review the application process for student members who meet eligibility criteria.
About Learning Ally
Learning Ally is a leading education nonprofit dedicated to equipping educators with proven solutions that help new and struggling learners reach their potential. Our range of literacy-focused offerings for students in Pre-K to 12th grade and catalog of professional learning allows us to support more than 1.6 million students and 260,000 educators through our solutions and community, across the United States.
Categories: Blind or Visually Impaired, General, In the News, Learning Disabilities, National Achievement Awards, Press Releases, Reading Champions, Students
May 13, 2022 by Learning Ally
On Sunday, May 15 and Monday, May 16, a lunar eclipse will occur. This astronomical phenomenon occurs when the sun, Earth, and moon line up properly for the moon to pass into the Earth's shadow. Roughly three times a year, the moon passes through at least part of the Earth's shadow.
Because our moon's orbit is tilted, lunar eclipses do not occur every time the moon makes its monthly trek around our planet. It can only happen during a full moon, so we are likely to experience it just twice a year.
To catch a glimpse of the lunar eclipse and "blood moon," you'll have to stay awake late into the night and early morning. The term "blood moon" is used by many astronomy experts and writers to describe the rusty orange or reddish color glow the moon becomes from the light reflecting from the sun.
Learning Ally has many enjoyable and informative audiobooks about the sky, the sun, astronomy, and our universe. Search on a specific category or use keywords to find titles that will interest learners of any age in our Browse Audiobooks section.
For additional resources, PBS has excellent videos to demonstrate the mechanics of lunar eclipses to view and engage students with visualizations that show the alignment of the Moon, the Sun, and Earth from multiple perspectives.
Happy sky watching!
Categories: Activities, Audiobook Library, Parenting, Reading Champions, Students
January 31, 2022 by Jhara Navalo
In honor of Chinese New Year, we have selected some engaging audiobooks from our diverse libraries in support of the Asian American experience.. Suggest these titles to your children and then engage them in conversation regarding what they learned and liked about the books they read.
by Teresa Robeson
Elementary: Grades 0-3
This engaging biography follows Wu Chien Shiung as she battles sexism and racism to become what Newsweek magazine called the "Queen of Physics" for her work on beta decay. Along the way, she earned the admiration of famous scientists like Enrico Fermi and Robert Oppenheimer and became the first woman hired as an instructor by Princeton University, the first woman elected President of the American Physical Society, the first scientist to have an asteroid named after her when she was still alive, and many other honors.
by Augusta Scattergood
Middle School: Grades 5-7
Billy's great-aunt and uncle own the Lucky Foods grocery store, where days are long and some folks aren't friendly. For Azalea, whose family and experiences seem different from most everybody she knows, friendship has never been easy. Maybe this time, it will be.
by Stacey Lee
Middle School: Grades 7+
Seventeen-year-old Jo Kuan works as a lady's maid for the cruel daughter of one of the wealthiest men in Atlanta. But by night, Jo moonlights as the pseudonymous author of a newspaper advice column for the genteel Southern lady, "Dear Miss Sweetie." When her column becomes wildly popular, she uses the power of the pen to address some of society's ills, but she's not prepared for the backlash that follows when her column challenges fixed ideas about race and gender.
by Gene Luen Yang
High School: Grades 9-12
A tour-de-force by rising indy comics star Gene Yang, American Born Chinesetells the story of three apparently unrelated characters lives and stories come together with an unexpected twistin this action-packed modern fable.
by Adrienne Berard
The girls were Chinese American and considered by the school to be "colored"; the school was for whites. This event would lead to the first US Supreme Court case to challenge the constitutionality of racial segregation in Southern public schools, an astonishing thirty years before the landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision. Unearthing one of the greatest stories never told, journalist Adrienne Berard recounts how three unlikely heroes sought to shape a new South.
About Learning Ally
Learning Ally's reading accommodation and audiobooks will help you level the learning field for students with reading deficits. Use the library to ensure that all students receive equitable access to grade-level text on their intellectual level, as well as to popular books and genres that interest them. Learn more about membership or if you are a school representative sign up for a demo to experience the satisfaction of seeing your emerging and early learners, as well as older students, improve their foundational reading skills, learning confidence, and academic potential.
Categories: Audiobook Library