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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.

Nothing motivates a struggling reader more than experiencing his or her own success. That’s why Read Naturally programs incorporate goals and progress monitoring graphs to show students continuous proof of their improvement. Students are even more motivated when teachers and parents help celebrate this success. If you’re looking for ways to show your Read Naturally students how awesome they are, here are some ideas:

Although the default settings in Read Live tend to work well for most students, the program is highly customizable. Teachers who adjust the program settings to suit the diverse needs of their students often find that a slight tweak is all it takes to help a struggling student soar. How can teachers change the default settings? And when are such changes indicated?

Welcome to the second half of the school year! Are you ready to see your Read Naturally students crush their goals and accelerate their progress? As you know, they will improve most rapidly when they’re working in the sweet spot of challenging but not frustrating material. Thanks to the detailed graphs and reports in Read Naturally Live, finding this sweet spot is easier than ever. The Students-at-a-Glance report is a particularly useful tool for quickly identifying students who are not working with optimal levels or goals, or students who need extra support in key areas.

Welcome to the home stretch! For most schools across the nation, winter break is just a couple days away. We hope your students’ time at home will allow them to get lost in the pages of a book beneath a cozy blanket. Last week’s blog post offers several ideas to help your students boost their literacy skills at home. Before you send them on their way, we want to reiterate the importance of just one: Reading aloud.

The Holiday Season is upon us, along with all the extra student excitement that makes this time of year oh-so-special. By this point in the school year, Read Naturally students have become more competent in reading and are advancing through stories and levels more quickly. How can you empower them to keep up their skills over winter break?

At Read Naturally, we value educating teachers as much as we value educating students. In order for struggling readers to become fluent readers, teachers must learn the best ways to support these students. We believe all teachers should have access to this information, which is why we offer a variety of teacher training resources free of charge.

My first grader came to the last section of his “Halloween word problems” math worksheet yesterday and let out a giant groan. The instruction was, “Now write a Halloween word problem of your own.” It was challenging enough for him to read and then solve the problems. Now he had to write one, too? “But writing takes forever!” he complained.

After working with a boy named Mathias for a couple of weeks, Read Naturally founder Candyce Ihnot had a hunch that she had placed him in the wrong level. How could she be sure? And what could she do to correct her mistake? The answer was to check his initial placement. Then, after Candyce found the appropriate level and goal for Mathias, she came up with a creative solution to ensure his needs were being met.

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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