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Readers Who Struggle Can Learn From Wonderful Teacher/Student Created On-Level Reading Projects


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Keywords: Leearning Needs, Technology, Camera, Photography, First-Grade, On-Level, Reading, Dyslexia
Subject(s): English/Language Arts, Social Studies, Photography, Reading, Writing, Special Needs, Dyslexia, Autism, Technology, Social Skills, Video, Art, Spelling, Grammar, Science, Math
Grades K through 1
School: Gillett Elementary School, Gillett, WI
Planned By: Vicky Britton
Original Author: Vicky Britton, Gillett
This plan can be used in ANY curricular area and you are encouraged to adapt the project to as many curricular areas as possible. The possibilities are endless. Photograph and tell the story of plants, friendships, playground rules, ocean creatures, counting toys, counting coins in a make-believe or real store, visiting a farm, a presidential inauguration, how to check out a library book, study skills, choosing an on-level book, planting a garden, these are my friends, our classroom has rules, etc. Turn any teachable moment into an on-level reading experience.

1. Narrow in on a subject.- For the sake of this lesson we will work with the subject Plants.
2. Take a walk through the school forest to observe plants in their natural habitat. Photograph the different varieties of plants.
3. Import the photos to my SMARTBoard software and let the students observe, identify, discuss the varied types of plants that are in our school forest.
4. Read many books about plants, gardens, a seed's lifecycle, etc. ie. From Plant to Seed by Scholastic
5. In science class, have students plant bean seeds near the edge of a plastic see- through cups. Do this every third day for a period of 2 weeks.
6. Have students document the growth of the seeds through sketches and journal writings.
7. Use one Reading class period to discuss story elements.
8. Create a Story map for the subject of plants by discussing each component of a story map from the previous lesson. Discuss how each component will fit into the on-level reader that you are creating.
9. Photograph the various parts and stages of the bean plants.
10. Using SMARTBOARD software (available in my classroom) create a storyboard of the photographs.
11. Using the feedback from the Dyslexia Bundle and my knowledge of first-grade sight words repetition, skills, etc. develop the nonfiction text to use in the on-level reader.
12. Use the on-level reader created with SMARTBoard Software to practice reading skills.
13. Download the reader to cd or using Photoshop Elements (which I have) edit the story into a 2 page front-to-back reader that can be printed off and laminated.
14. Have the students bring the new on-level reading project home to share with their families.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
This plan can be used in ANY curricular area and you are encouraged to adapt the project to as many curricular areas as possible. The possibilities are endless. Photograph and tell the story of plants, friendships, playground rules, ocean creatures, counting toys, counting coins in a make-believe or real store, visiting a farm, a presidential inauguration, how to check out a library book, study skills, choosing an on-level book, planting a garden, these are my friends, our classroom has rules, etc. Turn any teachable moment into an on-level reading experience.
Follow-Up
This plan can be used in ANY curricular area and you are encouraged to adapt the project to as many curricular areas as possible. The follow-up activities can take your students in any direction that they or you want to go. A great direction would be to have students start to create and publish their own video books using Photostory, and the many different forms of technology. Parents could even become involved!
Materials: Dyslexia, Autism, Writing, Literacy, Reading, Headsets, Hard Drives, Digital SLR, Hardware Devices
Other Items: 1 Olympus EVOLT E-420 Digital SLR with 14-42mm Lens, $599.99 each, total of $599.99
1 Dyslexia Bundle, $747.95 each, total of $747.95
1 External Hard Drive -Toshiba USB 2.0 Portable, $159.99 each, total of $159.99
1 Headphones with Microphone, $36.97 each, total of $36.97
1 Compact Flash Memory Cards, $44.99 each, total of $44.99