As you arrive back to school from the summer term, most students may not be at the same level as they were when school left off in the spring. This is no reason to panic. The idea of the Summer Slide is known, but we are always actively looking for ways to combat it.
To address this issue, here are a couple of things you can implement into your approach to help improve your student’s reading level.
You should be setting four different kinds of goals. The first two are daily and weekly goals. These can be small things, like exploring a new style of book or even reading for an extra 10 minutes a day. Students should write their goals somewhere that can be easily seen each day as a reminder to stay on track. The second two are quarterly and yearly goals. These should be set based on the standard benchmark and should be reviewed throughout the year. To help jumpstart this process, here are some great examples of reading goals to be setting with your students.
Revisit the Basics
If students are behind on their reading, taking a step back and making sure that they understand the fundamental strategies of reading comprehension may be the first step. Without a complete understanding of this knowledge, it becomes difficult for students to improve their skills beyond this. By creating a simple lesson once a week to understand one of the fundamental skills, improvement is sure to be on its way.
In alignment with their newly set goals, the student should have time to practice on their own, giving them the independence to try and complete their goals. It is with this repetition that improvement will show. Programs like Dreamscape are perfect for this kind of practice, where the content stays engaging while skills are improved upon.
Although fiction books can open a child’s mind to endless creativity, students should also be exposed to non-fiction books. Benefits can include expanded vocabulary, preparation for later grades, and also help inform students about the world that they live in.
Along with assigned homework, a set amount of time can be allocated to students each night. This can be about 30 minutes per night, and specific texts can be assigned, or students can pick something themselves that intrigues them.
Although some students may be on track, it is important to check-in with your students on their progress. This can be once a week, once a month, whatever seems suitable for each student. This time can provide an opportunity to review their goals, adjust where needed and define new strategies for their success.
We hope that with the application of some of these suggestions, you feel you have a healthy plan going into the school year.