• May 15, 2014

powerUp_5upPicture this: Your student, Madelyn, who had never been an active participant in your class, beaming as she shows you her “visualization” drawn with Clicker6 on her computer.

She is meaningfully connecting with literature in your classroom and being excited about it! We imagined that scenario and wondered if we could play a role. How could we support students who rely on assistive technology to meet their learning needs, in a climate of inclusion, and in classrooms where reading and responding to reading in deep and meaningful ways is part of the curriculum? We envisioned a student resources project to develop activities for this purpose.

We looked to the book, “Reading Power” by Adrienne Gear as a starting point and considered some of the assistive technology currently being used to support students in elementary and middle grades. We selected Clicker 6 and SOLO 6 as the two assistive technologies that we would use to create these resources. Our project had three aims: to build interactive activities in Clicker 6, to build Outlines in SOLO 6 and to create Accessible Books to support the resources. With help from Bridges-Canada for the SOLO outlines, we have now available 40 Clicker 6 Sets, 15 SOLO 6 Outlines, and 55 accessible books based on Gear’s lists of recommended books.

Reading Power,” written by Adrienne Gear, from School District 39, has been changing the way teachers approach reading with their students. The book is designed to teach specific strategies during the reading process. These strategies engage students and guide them towards being more thoughtful about what they read by helping them:

  • find connections to the stories,
  • question the things they read,
  • visualize or create images in their minds,
  • make inferences from the story, and
  • transform their thinking.

The book is clearly laid out and can be used with students from K to 12. While the strategies that Gear presents are not unique to “Reading Power,” she presents them in a way that is appealing and easy to follow.

Many of her strategies rely on students being able to use templates that are provided in the book. These templates were the starting point for the student resources we created.

Our inspiration came from the draft curriculum released this year by the BC Ministry of Education. “When it comes to English Language Arts K-9, …the curriculum is written with a focus on the Big Ideas: the importance of literature and story, the joy and power of language, communicating ideas and information, and exploration of self, one’s identity and one’s place within the community…with an…increased emphasis on literature, including story (ways of knowing and sharing), and communication and an …emphasis on opportunities for students to engage in playful language activities; connect to literature in ways that are personally meaningful; and think creatively, reflectively, and critically…” (BC Ministry of Education)

To locate the activities that support Reading Power in SET-BC’s curriculumSET , enter “reading power” in the search field. Click SEARCH.

To locate accessible books in our collection from the Reading Power book lists, go to the SET-BC Accessible Books online ordering form and enter “reading power” in the Series field.