Tag Archives: Lesson Plans

Current Events For All Readers

Many of us have faced a similar problem.  Either we ourselves, or someone in our care needs to do work involving Current Events.  Quite often, the person might have difficulty understanding the article at the given reading level.  Sometimes the person is an advanced reader and finds the given article too easy.  Now there is a solution for both – Newsela.

Newsela is an organization that provides articles at reading levels from fourth grade to college ready.  Viewers can read the original article or choose the reading level that is just right for them.  Newsela edits the article to fit that particular reading level.  In addition to world events, science, law  and financial matters, readers can find articles relevant to children and young adult interests in today’s world.  All of the articles are obtained from well-known, news worthy organizations.   If the reading level is changed, the “meat” of the article is kept, while the vocabulary of the reading is altered to fit the requested level.

You do not need to register; however, if you do not, you are limited to five articles a day.  Registration provides you with unlimited access and it is free.  You can create class groupings and assign your students a code for them to use so they can register safely.

You also have the ability to create online quizzes on the material for the students to take.  The quizzes are aligned with the Common Core standards and will help you to determine what reading level and understanding level your student is currently functioning at.

If you are using Newsela for assignments, I would still double check that the material you want to be covered is available in all of the reading levels your group requires.

So whether you are looking for a news source in your personal life, for your child or your student, Newsela is an excellent resource to try.

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Filed under Common Core, ELA, lesson planning, research, Social Studies, Standards

Your student/child has no knowledge of Civics? Never fear, iCivics is here!

Justice Sandra Day O’Connor noticed children’s declining knowledge regarding citizenship, the branches of government and the role that media plays in affecting our civic life.   She realized the next generation needs to understand how our government works and the roles it plays in order to secure our democracy in the years to come.  She created a Website titled iCivics.  This is a Website that can be utilized by kids, parents and teachers.

In addition to the board and staff, iCivics is made up of a team of state supreme court justices, secretaries of state, educational leaders, as well as other committed volunteers.  They work together to provide information about our legacy of democracy, how it began and how it works today.

Lesson plans are aligned to state standards and are listed as the following units of study: Boys & Girls Clubs of America; Budgeting; Citizenship & Participation; Civil Rights; County Solutions; Foundations of Government; International Affairs; Media & Influence; Persuasive Writing; Politics & Public Policy; State and Local Government; The Constitution; The Executive Branch; The Judicial Branch; The Legislative Branch and The Three Branches.

Games and activities are available on the following topics: Citizenship & Participation; Separation of Powers; The Constitution and Bill of Rights; The Judicial Branch; The Executive Branch; The Legislative Branch and Budgeting.

Whether you are looking for an educational game for your child to play or a lesson plan to bring our history home in the classroom, iCivics may be just the Website you are looking for.

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Filed under games, lesson planning, Social Studies, Standards

Some Helpful Common Core Posts

This post is a list of a few links I provided to my staff for Common Core Standards resources.  I will provide more links in later posts.

Common Core State Standards

Common Core State Standards
New York State Common Core Learning Standards for ELA & Literacy
New York State Common Core Learning Standards for Mathematics

Resources

Bringing the Common Core to Life Webinar

EngageNY   

School Librarians and the Common Core (although this is for librarians, there is a great deal of helpful information to be found)

Common Core and 21st Century Learner Standards Crosswalk 

Information Fluency Continuum & Common Core State Standards

Standards & Curriculum – New York City Department of Education School Library System (although this is for librarians, there is a great deal of helpful information to be found)
Text Complexity

Defining Text Complexity

Lexile Framework for Reading 

Complexity Grade Bands and Lexile Ranges

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Filed under Common Core, lesson planning