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Supporting Students that Show Signs of a Reading Deficit

Categories: Assistive Technology, Audiobook Library, Curriculum & Access, dyslexia, Education & Teaching, Learning Ally “How-To Use”, Learning Disabilities, Reading Strategies for K-12

Lane Young with studentLane Young, the Director of Educational Technology at Phillips Brooks School in Menlo Park, California says, “The Learning Ally Audiobook Solution is super helpful to support children who are showing early signs of a reading deficit.”  The independent, co-educational private day school serves preschoolers through fifth graders in Silicon Valley near neighboring Stanford University. The school community inspires its more than 280 students to love learning, to develop a spiritual nature, to communicate effectively, to be kind and to respect the uniqueness of each classmate and to enjoy reading. Young says, “Audiobooks help children who struggle to read comprehend the context of a story or assignment.” As a former librarian, he believes audio support is a beneficial supplement to formal reading instruction to keep children engaged and reading consistently. 

Learning specialists at his school – one for K-2 and one for grades 3-5 -- work closely with each child to assess their reading skills, particularly in decoding and comprehension. If they assess a child with a potential learning disability or identify them as falling behind, the specialists prescribe the Learning Ally Audiobook Solution as a reading accommodation for additional support. 

The specialists download audiobooks for eligible children, which is roughly one-third of their overall student population. They find titles to match daily reading-themed studies, Readers’ Workshop assignments, and a variety of titles for literacy circles, where children may be reading several books. Young says the intention of all of these reading events is to promote a thriving culture of young readers. 

In third grade, each child receives an iPad. Young sees a big jump in technology prowess at this stage of learning. “Not surprisingly, we serve a lot of tech-native children in our school,” he says. Fourth and fifth graders enjoy even more opportunities to read and to make individual choices of what they want to read. “Learning Ally gives us plenty of access to all types of stories and curriculum. This versatility is great to keep all children engaged and motivated to read. We can select titles based on their personal interests and their comprehension and grade level. The supplemental, accessible library fits into our school’s student-centered philosophical approach to cultivate a growth-learning mindset in every child to become confident, independent readers and thinkers.”

Support Your Students with Reading Deficits with the Learning Ally Audiobook Solution

The Learning Ally Audiobook Solution is a multi-sensory reading accommodation that levels the playing field for students who struggle to read due to a reading deficit, providing them the opportunity achieve in school and in life. Gaining access to the books they want to read—and the books they need to read—in an easy-to-absorb format can be a game changer. Sign up for a demo or get more information today to experience the satisfaction of seeing students who have never before experienced reading success blossom, with improved grades, higher test scores and increased confidence and self-esteem.

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