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Afterschool Curriculum Choice: Literacy Resources
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Curriculum Details for
Project Read

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Program
Description
Practitioner Expert
Review
Content Expert
Review
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Practitioner Expert Background

This practitioner has a degree in elementary education and has been teaching kindergarten through the third grade for 20 years.  She started using Project Read four years ago.  It started as a pull-out program, where she used the curriculum with eight first-grade students for two hours per day. Later, she used Project Read with an entire classroom of non-readers.  All of these students were struggling readers who had repeated or just barely passed first grade, from mostly African American and low-income backgrounds. A few years ago she also became trained as a Project Read Facilitator, and now trains other teachers using the curriculum.

Logistics

Training
  • Attended a week-long training.  Trainers demonstrated some of the lessons with students from her school.
  • Was able to implement the curriculum effectively after attending the training.
  • Excellent customer service, especially pleased with the company representatives who have assisted her.
Set-up/preparation
  • Preparation time may be longer for some aspects of the curriculum than others.
  • For example, the phonics lessons are highly prescribed and require less time. Comprehension and written expression take longer to prepare; for example, the instructor has to obtain the stories and books him or herself. 
  • Six students is an ideal group size.

Student Engagement

  • Students always enthusiastic to use Project Read
  • Use of kinesthetic activities seemed to help students feel like they were playing all day, instead of learning.
  • Students always seem attentive and focused while using the curriculum.
  • Story Form and Report Form were two of students’ favorites.
  • Parents reported that their children, once in Project Read, started requesting to go to the library to pick out books.
  • Saw improvement in academic outcomes for students who had struggled with reading.
  • Content feels less appropriate for older students who are reading at low levels.

Content

Adaptability to instructor needs
  • Structure is helpful.
  • Adaptable to the needs of the students. Can group students according to ability level and use the curriculum accordingly.
  • Teacher can easily add own games and activities to the curriculum.
General skills taught
  • Choice of stories could be used to teach morals, values, etc.
  • Teacher could potentially incorporate more non-academic skills into his or her lesson plans, but none are explicitly outlined in the curriculum.
Addressing diverse student needs
  • Has found it to be engaging and effective for students of all backgrounds.
  • The comprehension component touches many different cultures and backgrounds.
  • Reaches auditory and kinesthetic learners effectively. For example, uses symbols to help students learn and identify predicates.
  • Content is less appropriate for older students who are reading at lower levels.

Strengths and Challenges

Strengths
  • Has seen progress in students’ grades and attendance following implementation of Project Read.
  • Builds self-esteem and enthusiasm for reading.
  • Students start to volunteer to read aloud in other classes.
  • Curriculum is self-explanatory and direct. Easy to order all needed materials.
Challenges
  • Content is less appropriate for older students who are reading at lower levels.


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