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Summer School Sets the Stage for Success
Find out how one New York City student discovered himself as a reader during an unexpected time in the school year. Jay* was an intrinsically bright student whose lack of… Read more
Rebooting Reading in Rockville Centre
In Rockville Centre, New York, students are excited about reading — and with good reason: since the district started using LightSail, they have just-right books at their fingertips and assessments… Read more
Digital Discussion Takes the Fear Out of Shakespeare
Daunting. Funny. Problematic. Brilliant. Confusing. Shakespeare’s language can bring any one of these adjectives to mind. The famously difficult prose has been known to bring straight-up fear to high school… Read more
5 Ways to Spot True Engagement
Engagement is the key to long-term success. Students who are excited about their own learning are more likely to put in the efforts required to see growth in the long… Read more
NY School Board Raves About LightSail
Students from Mineola Middle School in New York shared their experiences with LightSail at their district school board meeting on December 17th, 2015, and gave the adults a demonstration of… Read more
An Antidote to Test Prep Season
Recently, the United States DOE recommended schools spend no more than 2 percent of classroom time taking tests. [1] While more specific guidance is forthcoming in January, the message is… Read more
5 Ways to Create a Class of Stamina Superstars
In What Really Matters for Struggling Readers (2012), Dr. Richard Allington discusses a “strong positive correlation between the amount of time teachers allot for silent reading during the school day… Read more
Digital Libraries For The Win!
As classroom teachers, we’ve all had “that student”: the one that questions everything you say; the one that doesn’t like writing; the one that makes you do a little cartwheel… Read more
Oops, I Gamified Literacy – And It Worked
My life’s focus has been to improve student literacy outcomes, and I take that mission very seriously. After years devoted to literacy work in schools, I helped design LightSail based… Read more
Déjà New: How Old-School Literacy Goes High Tech
As a teacher, literacy specialist, and school leader who went into ed tech, I often find that I am straddling two worlds. On one hand (foot?), I believe that well-designed… Read more
Yes Kids Can: Metacognition and the CCSS
Among all the attacks on the Common Core, the one that is the most offensive – and destructive – is the one that suggests that the standards are too high… Read more
Five Ways to Get Students Obsessed with Nonfiction
We all agree kids who read more read better, acquire greater vocabularies and have stronger critical thinking skills. But we must also acknowledge that what they read is of equal… Read more
Why I Love Diary of a Wimpy Kid – and You Should, Too
“You can hide that, right?” principals will earnestly inquire. “Ugh, I hate that book!” many teachers will say while swiping through the LightSail library. I get it, I do. I,… Read more
Yes, #WeNeedDiverseBooks – and #WeHaveDiverseBooks
I started my career as a teacher in the Bronx. I had a decrepit classroom library filled with tattered, outdated, culturally irrelevant titles, and independent reading suffered accordingly. Given how… Read more
Insights for your ELA Classroom

We've gathered information on the topics educators ask us about most often. Each post is written to be insightful, practical and most of all, based on what we know works from our experiences with tens of thousands of classrooms across the country.

Trending Topics:

  • Going Digital & Your Literacy Strategy
  • Engaged Students in Data Driven Classrooms
  • How Formative Assessments Can Guide Instruction

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