San Diego — Nov. 17, 2015 — Findings in applied linguistics and reading research consistently show a strong correlation between reading proficiency and academic success at all ages, from the primary school right through to university level: students who read a lot and who understand what they read, succeed in school. To help students meet and exceed grade-level reading standards while streamlining the school’s independent reading process, Kimberly Masiello, literacy coach at America’s Finest Charter School in San Diego, has selected Learn2Earn and its Whooo’s Reading platform.
Also adding Whooo’s Reading to its classrooms is Renaissance Charter School at Coral Springs in Fla. In fact, more than 260,000 students in 9,000 schools now use the platform, designed to help students improve reading, critical thinking and writing proficiencies.
“We are taking reading to the next level,” said Stephanie Stern, curriculum-based instructional support/gifted liaison coordinator for Renaissance Charter School at Coral Springs. “By adding Whooo’s Reading to our curriculum, we are nurturing a greater sense of curiosity because students can read whatever interests them and receive book recommendations from peers, teachers and family members. Parents have shared with me that students race home to continue to use it and they particularly love seeing what other classmates are reading and then commenting on it.”
Specifically designed with the motto ‘make sure the kids always win,’ the lively Whooo’s Reading platform makes reading fun by giving students the power of choice, allowing them to read what they want while incorporating online game elements preferred by today’s digital natives.
Students using Whooo’s Reading via their secure personal profiles are inspired to read and think critically – and when doing so, are rewarded with virtual Wisdom Coins to personalize and embellish their “Owlvatar.” This adds a sense of ownership to their work, which motivates them to try harder and empowers them to improve reading, comprehension and writing skills. Students are further engaged by their class’s interactive newsfeed, which gives them the opportunity to engage in an authentic conversation with each other focused on what they have read plus it displays the books and accomplishments of their classmates. With its social-media feel, the newsfeed is a real draw for students and also encourages collaborative learning.
Teachers using Whooo’s Reading also have customization options that allow them to create their own question prompts to engage students and promote comprehension. Equally accessible are the growing number of preloaded questions aligned with all Common Core reading anchors (K-8) that come standard in each account.
“Our teachers have the ability to review each student’s reading responses and give qualitative and quantitative feedback,” said Masiello. “They find these written responses are a more genuine, deep and nuanced way to gauge their students’ comprehension than the standard multiple choice quiz offered with other programs. Additionally, our administrators and teachers can compare reading habits, analyze individual and class-wide progress as well as each class’s mastery of Common Core reading anchors from their data center.”
Masiello concluded, “This digital tool has really engaged our reluctant readers by eliminating the tedious paper-based reading logs. All of our students are excited to log minutes, accessorize their avatars and really express themselves through the gamification and social media features they are accustomed to. Our first impression of Whooo’s Reading remains our lasting one…this is an incredibly useful program.”
Learn2Earn is a young startup company focused on providing a 21st-century alternative to traditional literacy programs and school fundraising platforms. Unlike other reading or fundraising programs, their service is child-centric rather than educator-centric. That means that everything they develop is focused on benefitting the children who use it, on making reading fun, and improving specific reading and writing skills as outlined in the Common Core State Standards. In the area of fundraising, they offer something that most fundraising companies don’t: an educational platform for schools to use to raise money. Students aren’t selling; they’re improving their reading skills. For more information, visit https://www.learn2earn.org
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