The Reading Upgrade Intervention Program can help schools and districts meets the requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 to help all students achieve reading mastery.
Title I Part B: Reading & Literacy, Reading First
I. Scientifically-based reading programs that help all students achieve reading mastery
Reading Upgrade is based on the National Reading Panel’s April 2000 Report summarizing research results on reading. The panel studied over 100,000 research papers on the teaching of reading and provided detailed recommendations on how to teach reading. The lessons in Reading Upgrade follow the research-recommended systematic explicit instruction in phonics, phonemic awareness, word decoding, and comprehension. In addition,Reading Upgrade has been shown to improve student reading performance by one year within 8 weeks in a controlled study conducted by Dr. Juanita Cole at UC San Diego
(read the summary). Additional studies have been conducted at a variety of schools, including a trial by New Mexico State University(read the summary). These trials included students from 3rd grade to 12th grade and adult, including Title I, ESL, and Special Needs classes, with gains of 1 to 3 years in reading. For more details, see the “Teaching Content” and “Results” pages at http://www.learningupgrade.com
II. Systematic explicit instruction in phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary development, fluency, and reading comprehension
Reading Upgradecontains lessons which explicitly teach using instructional songs, videos, and games a complete course in reading including all five elements of the No Child Left Behind Act:
1. Phonemic awareness skills: the ability to manipulate the sounds that make up spoken language. The Reading Upgradecourse has numerous lessons clearly showing how sounds make up words, and activities that require students to identify and manipulate sounds. For example, on Level 15 students listen to words with common beginning blend sounds and then visually match the correct beginning blend text to the ending text for that word.
2. Phonics skills: the understanding that there are relationships between letters and sounds. The course teaches all the letter sounds through songs, videos, and games. The course also teaches word decoding and sound blending skills and requires students to sound out and identify a variety of words. For example, on Level 13, students learn the “Silent E” long vowels in a song-video. Then, they listen to a word and select the short or long vowel text version: “can” or “cane”.
3. Vocabulary development: the understanding of the meaning of words. Reading Upgrade uses a variety of strategies to develop students’ vocabulary. High frequency sight words are taught throughout the program using a “Sight Words” song and game. Lessons on common word families, prefixes and suffixes, Greek and Latin Root Words, synonyms and antonyms further develop vocabulary skills.
4. Fluency: the ability to read fluently with accuracy, speed and expression. The course through a game metaphor motivates students to read and comprehend words, sentences, and passages quickly. Students must actively read and understand text and answer comprehension questions throughout the program. For example, on Level 40, students receive written directions to a surprise party. The student must quickly read each direction sentence and identify choices on maps.
5. Comprehension: to apply reading comprehension strategies to enhance understanding and enjoyment of what they read. In the course, students learn key comprehension strategies and must actively read passages and answer questions. For example, in Level 47 students learn through a song-video about the “main idea” of a passage, and then must read five passages and answer over 20 multiple-choice questions including identifying the main idea of each passage.
Title I Part A: Accountability & Assessment
The Reading Upgrade Intervention Program has a proven track record for improvement in student performance in Title I, ESL, and Special Needs classes, in school and in after-school and summer school programs. Average student gains in reading are rapid and measurable. (see Results) Thus the program can be critical to the deployment of instruction that can meet the strict accountability requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act.
Students completing the lessons in Reading Upgrade and continually assessed with advancement based on demonstrated performance. Teachers can monitor student performance using web-based tracking pages with printable reports.
Title I, Part C: Migrant Education
The Reading Upgrade Intervention Program has been used in migrant education to rapidly deliver effective research-based reading instruction to a student population that does not respond to traditional, long-term reading intervention. Since students can typically complete each of the two courses in the program within 8 weeks with a variety of teaching situations, migrant children can have access to flexible, rapid instruction. The ability for each student to start the course at any time and move at their own pace without one-on-one supervision allows a large population of migrant student to receive quality reading instruction.
Title II Part D: Instructional Technology
The Reading Upgrade Intervention Program can help schools and districts deploy research-based instruction to a wide audience of students using a school’s existing technology resources. By making use of a school’s existing computers, networks, and classrooms to rapidly deploy research-based instruction, the program offers schools a new way to reach every struggling reader with quality instruction.
Title IV Part B: 21st Century Community Learning Centers
The Reading Upgrade Intervention Program can be deployed in a wide variety of before- and after-school, off-track, and summer school situations to give students access to quality reading instruction outside of school hours. Since the program does not have complicated or time-consuming professional development requirements or the purchase of new equipment or materials, community learning centers can rapidly deploy the course with existing staff to help large numbers of students learn to read. Also, since sessions can be flexible in schedule from as little as 30 minutes to over one hour, and from 2 to 5 days each week, the courses in the program can be adapted to a variety of situations.