When I first reviewed myView Literacy, I was overwhelmed with the wealth of amazing resources at my fingertips. Never again would I have to spend countless hours perusing the web for quality materials to engage my students. Alas! I had everything I needed and more on Pearson Realize. From the ready-made literacy stations and interactive e-Text, I could tell right away that myView was the “real deal.” Though I could see myself using, well, EVERYTHING on a daily basis, one digital feature stood out to me over all the rest: The Leveled Reader Building Background videos for ELLs. I want to tell y’all that: 👏These. 👏Are. 👏A. 👏Game. 👏Changer.
I began my career as a third-grade teacher in a school that lived next to a Refugee Service Center. My students came to me from everywhere and all walks of life. I had a class of English Learners at every proficiency level—beginner, intermediate, advanced, and advanced-high. I am certain that the unique population of kiddos in my class matched hundreds, if not thousands, of classrooms across the country. In terms of resources, I lacked ELL material to support this diverse group of learners. In ELAR, what I needed most were tools to help my students build the background knowledge that they needed to be successful whenever they read something new. And in 3rd grade, I needed my kids to have every ounce of background knowledge possible to prepare them for high-stakes testing.
My wishes came true when I learned that every single leveled reader in the myView program comes with an ELL Background Video! These are short and sweet videos that are devoted to helping English Learners build background knowledge. This background will deepen their understanding of the text that they’re about to explore. The videos are presented at the beginning of each digital reader and are similar to a “book trailer.” If you are teaching guided reading at your horseshoe table each day, consider this your book launch—already done for you! The beauty of these videos is that a teaching point is nestled within each one. So not only are students building background knowledge, but they are also receiving a minilesson over various grammar, word study, and comprehension skills. Check out the example below—and see if you can spot the teaching point!
Yep, you guessed it! The ai vowel pattern is the teaching point here. You can use these videos just with your English Learners, but as you could see while watching, they would actually be beneficial to every student in your classroom. Can you see why I’m crazy about them?
If you are teaching in a myView classroom this upcoming school year, never forget this powerful tool that will level the playing field and set your ELLs up for success. Happy teaching!
Becky Howard is a Literacy Specialist working for Pearson K12 Learning. She is an Austin native and a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin. Becky holds a degree in Early Childhood Education with a Master’s degree in Educational Leadership. She was an elementary ELAR teacher in the Dallas area where she spearheaded teacher learning in literacy PLCs. Following her time as a teacher, Becky served as a campus instructional coach where she was dedicated to fostering student and teacher growth in literacy. As a passionate educator, she works to ensure that all students and teachers have plentiful opportunities to flourish as lifelong learners.