An Evaluation of Academic Language Program for Students

Product Title: Academic Language Program for Students (ALPS)

Vendor: Footsteps2Brilliance


Retail Price: The price is based on volume.

Quality and Effectiveness
This is a complete reading program for the iPad and Android geared for K-2nd graders. It is extremely versatile as it allows books to be read independently or with audio. Upon completion of the book the app includes leveled activities for the students that are monitored by the teacher. Teachers can follow the student’s level and note whether or not he or she is able to comprehend the questions asked. The app also encourages students to be independent – a trait to be encouraged at every stage of children’s reading development.

Ease of Use
The app is extremely user-friendly. The most difficult aspect of the program is each student needs to remember their user name and password. Once the student logs in he or she is presented with a library of books that can be read in English or Spanish. Upon completion of the book the teacher has a choice of three activities for the student to work on. The app uses a bright color code to help the student remember the activity and what level he or she is working on. In my classroom, students were immediately engrossed in their books and activities.

Creative Use of Technology
Academic Language Program for Students (ALPS) is extremely innovative, taking full advantage of the touch screen capabilities. For example, the pages of each story have interactive features built into the illustrations. For teachers, benefits include the ability to track students' progress on their iPad. Teachers can email clear, concise reports to parents and document how the student is meeting the Common Core Standards. The program also has an online component for teachers called Teacher Resources that includes a writer’s workshop with lesson plans for each book and a flashcard maker to reinforce spelling and vocabulary words. With today’s rigorous educational goals, it is nice to have an all-in-one program for early learners that includes learning objectives and data-tracking.

Suitability for Use in a School Environment
Academic Language Program for Students (ALPS) is perfect for the school environment. It can take the place of traditional reading programs and “dittos” for homework.

Overall Rating
This program rates a 10, but I would like to see more books added.

Top three reasons why this product’s overall features, functionality, and educational value make it a good choice for schools.

  1. This is an all inclusive Reading and Writing Program.
  2. Meets the Common Core Standards for K-2nd grade. In addition it is a wonderful program for Developmentally Disabled students who are struggling with reading.
  3. Ability to track student data! We need to be accountable to both parents and to the schools we work for. Data is the key to a successful app.

Vicki Windman is a special education teacher at Clarkstown High School South.