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A Renaissance in Reading Ability

by Eddie Rayner

Committed to accelerating learning for all, Renaissance believes that everyone can be successful, and that empowering teachers is integral to this success. Dolores Elliot-Wilson, Chief Librarian at Sunmarke School Dubai, for instance, is currently using its data-driven and personalised reading practice, Accelerated Reader, alongside its digital, cloud-based assessment suite, Star Reading.

How do you start to create a learning plan for students?

At Sunmarke School, we have a diverse range of students, with around 50% being English language learners. The challenge was to create a literacy development programme to help guide these students and improve their English. The Star Reading assessment test is important in understanding the precise level for each student. Once we know their initial score and reading range, we can create the learning plan coupled with Accelerated Reader, to improve reading practice.

How have students taken to Accelerated Reader?

We found that students are much more engaged in the library with Accelerated Reader. We have seen substantial growth, with some students having made a year’s worth of progress in just a few months. Once students have done one or two quizzes, you’ll see a growth in independence as they continue to use the programme.

What is the primary objective of Renaissance?

Renaissance creates assessment and practice solutions that put learning analytics to work for educators, saving hours of prep time, while making truly personalised learning possible. Schools use the company’s solutions to analyse students’ abilities and guide high-quality instruction. Put simply, Renaissance helps teachers to teach better, students to learn better, and school administrators to lead better, resulting in improved academic outcomes.

Do you have any tips for Renaissance customers?

My advice for teachers would be to get involved and encourage the project from the beginning! Don’t restrict children from reading, but instead try and encourage them to read suitably challenging books from within their recommended reading ranges. Also, try and regularly look at the Diagnostic Report and see which students haven’t taken their quizzes. You may find that some children are nervous to start with, but once they have done one or two quizzes, you’ll see a growth in independence as they continue to use the programme.

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Website: www.renaissance.com
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