What kind of learning can happen on the first day of school? Naturally, students will learn who you are, the rules of your classroom, and where to put their materials. Our hope is that they will do some effective work toward their literacy goals too. Is it realistic to expect this on day one? With One Minute Reader Live, it certainly is!

One Minute Reader Live, included with all Read Live subscriptions, is a fully independent program that allows students to start making reading progress immediately. This program uses the Read Naturally Strategy and includes high-interest stories and fun activities. Unlike with Read Naturally Live, you don’t need to place students or keep detailed track of their progress. You can simply approximate the right level for them and they can begin, easily moving up or down in levels if the material is too easy or too hard.

One Minute Reader Live is not intended as a replacement for Read Naturally Live, but rather as a supplement to the program. It is ideal for bridging the gap between when school starts and when your Read Naturally Live program is up and running. This program is also a fun and effective literacy activity for students to do during independent time all year long. Even a few minutes a day will add up to valuable progress toward their goals.

The easiest way to get students started in One Minute Reader Live is to have them watch this short, informative student training video.

While most students will be able to get started in One Minute Reader Live with little to no support from a teacher, young students will need a little extra guidance at first. For the students working in Level 1 (a mid-first-grade reading level) and Level E (emerging readers), our teacher trainer Claire Hayes recommends making some accommodations.

Accommodations for Students in Level E and Level 1

First, Claire recommends mandating three read alongs for these students. This will ensure that the students are spending most of their time working on audio-supported reading, which is the quickest route toward building fluency.

Second, young students in levels E and 1 may find the comprehension questions too challenging. Because there is no audio support for the questions, these students may have trouble reading and answering them at first. They also might have difficulty typing in an answer for the short-answer question. To solve this problem, Claire recommends teaching a few quick strategies. The multiple-choice questions follow a pattern. Teachers can help young students by explaining the pattern as follows:

  • Question 1 is always a main idea question. Except for the story title, the words in the question don’t change. The question always says, “What is most of [story title] about?” If you teach this to students, they will understand that this first question is always asking them what the story is mostly about.
  • Question 3 is always a vocabulary question. The question asks what a word in the story means. Teach students to click “show story” so the story text displays and to look for the word in blue that the question is asking about. Students can click on this blue word for an audio-supported definition and picture that will help them answer the question.
  • Question 2 asks the student for a detail from the story, and question 4 requires the student to make an inference. While the words in these questions vary from question to question, you can teach students that they will find the answers to these questions in the story. Remind them to click “show story” to look back in the story for clues.
  • The last question, the short answer question, requires typing something into the text box. Claire recommends having young students just type a single letter into the box, essentially skipping this question until they develop better typing skills.

Note that level E does not have a main idea or an inference question. To make level E questions easy enough, most of the questions just ask about a detail from the story. To answer these questions, students should click “show story” and look for clues in the text. Question 3 is always a vocabulary question, and students can click “show story” to find the blue word in the story for an audio-supported definition and picture.

Even after you teach these strategies, the questions might still be too hard for young students at the beginning of the year. It is okay if students answer them incorrectly, especially on the first attempt. If students are truly struggling, you can tell them to just make their best guess. At the beginning of the year, the priority is to get students reading as much as possible. If they are stalling on the questions, it is helpful to encourage them to move along by guessing. Then they can start another audio-supported story and build their fluency. When fluency starts to click, comprehension follows. Plus, when students begin working in Read Naturally Live, they will have a more robust intervention in which they will build their comprehension skills.

And by the way, teaching these comprehension strategies for One Minute Reader Live will also benefit your Read Naturally Live program, because the questions in both programs follow the same pattern. So, it’s a worthwhile time investment to make as soon as you can.

Please let us know how we can support you as you hit the ground running with One Minute Reader Live this year. For more details on using this program, check out our free webinar, One Minute Reader Live Basics.

Don't have a Read Live account? You can still set your students up for success on day one with One Minute Reader Live. Sign up today for a free 60-day free trial! This gives you access to the entire Read Live suite, which includes Read Naturally Live, Word Warm-ups Live, One Minute Reader Live, and Read Naturally Live—Español.