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We’ve reached the time of year when many parents are filling up their summer calendars, making plans to keep their children’s minds and bodies busy. We at Read Naturally believe reading is the most important activity children should be engaged in this summer. Quiet time to read might not earn a spot on the family calendar, but it should be highly prioritized nonetheless.

In order to continue improving in reading comprehension, students need to continually expand their vocabularies. As much as teachers might like to explicitly teach them all the words they need to learn, this just isn’t realistic. Students need to learn strategies for figuring out new words on their own.

Summer will be here before we know it! While we all welcome summer, we do not welcome the Summer Slide. For this reason, many teachers have expressed interest in setting up students to continue working in Read Live at home over the summer.

We love providing educators with free resources. Not only do these materials help struggling students, but they tend to make teachers’ lives easier. In recent weeks, we’ve shared free resources to help students correct common spelling errors as well as free resources to help students master visually confusing letters. This week, we’re sharing three free supplemental resources for students working in Read Live and Encore.

If you look at q p d and b, it’s no wonder emerging readers tend to confuse them. These letters have similar forms, and many students who are learning to read and write tend to reverse, rotate, or invert them. They are part of a group of letters known as visually confusing letters.

When will your students finally learn to spell the word “finally”? Maybe when they learn to spell the word “maybe.” “Especially” is an especially hard word to spell, and let’s not even discuss how our friends at school spell the words “friends” and “school.” They’re probably all spelling “probably” and "too" wrong, too, and why does everybody seem to spell “everybody”—and “everything”—wrong?

The other day, my son asked me why blizzards are hazardous. The most interesting part of his question was the way he said the word hazardous. He pronounced it incorrectly, with a​ long a: HAYzardous. This told me he’d never heard the word spoken aloud before. However, when I probed him on the word’s meaning, he knew it exactly. How?

The fact that so many students love working in Read Naturally programs brings us great joy. But we are most delighted when students no longer need our programs. The whole point of a Read Naturally intervention is to one day exit the program as a fluent and confident reader. The sooner this day comes for a student, the better!

Valentine’s Day, a holiday about love, seems to instead fill a large portion of the population with dread. If romance isn’t your thing, you feel doomed. If you’re unpartnered, you feel left out. If you’re a teacher, you’re bracing yourself for a day of mayhem and over-sugared students. And if you’re a parent of school-aged children, your living space is suddenly littered with dozens of valentines your children need to address. Does anyone actually love this holiday?

Read Naturally founder Candyce Ihnot likes to tell the story of a little boy who went from struggling to fluent using the Read Naturally program. When Candyce asked the boy how he got to be such a good reader, he said with a smirk, “It was nothing you did.” Rather than be offended by his brutal honesty, Candyce was delighted. The boy was taking due credit for his own accomplishment. He had come to understand that he’d possessed the tools for success all along. Having found the confidence and fortitude to master a huge challenge, he could now draw on those qualities again and again—without his teacher’s help.

Make Your Student a STAR!

Read Naturally Star of the Month​Share your student’s success story—nominate him or her for our Star of the Month award. Win a Barnes & Noble gift card for the student and a Read Naturally gift certificate for your class!

pointer Submit a Star-of-the-Month entry

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