I had a great evening presenting for the ESGI Webinar Series on a topic that is dear to my heart, “Providing Reading Interventions That Support All Students.” I loved all of the feedback, questions, and comments from viewers. (I wish I could have answered them on the spot). If you haven’t had a chance to watch the webinar, it is available by clicking on the Youtube link below.
I am excited to address all of your questions and comments. However, since there are several hundred questions, I am going to address them as quickly as possible, a few at a time on blog posts and through our podcasts. If you have immediate questions, please like us on facebook and feel free to message me directly. Yes! I will answer every question asked (with Lyndsey’s help).
Sorting the questions on a spreadsheet, (thank you Lyndsey), I will address tonight the top three questions.
“Where can I get the Reading Timeline?”
That one is actually easy to answer. You can find it in a previous post called, “What To Do When Students Are Not Getting It?”
“Where do you get the TA help?”
Luckily I have a principal that is ALL IN! I have five aides that are assigned to me the full school day to work on school wide interventions. The other TA’s working during interventions are Special Ed aides and teachers, one-on-one behavioral or SPED aides, student interns, volunteers, classroom aides and teachers. Yes, even the assistant principal helps out during an intervention or two. Many Title 1 schools use valuable dollars on coaches and such. In my school, the assistant principal is the mentor teacher and coach, freeing up valuable dollars for support staff and a Reading Specialist of oversee the program.
That being said, I have done interventions with smaller staff sizes. The amount of staff really depends on your needs. Some schools and some grade levels simply need less intervention. Sometimes the teachers and two or so adults will be fine. Other years, I had only me! I gathered all of the parents I could. I was pleasantly surprised at how willing they all were!
Parents want the best for their students. Sometimes you just have to ask! Look to see if your community has a foster grandparent program (I had the same foster grandparent for 12 years), or a senior center filled with willing volunteers. Yep! I had a bus load brought in one hour a week to help with interventions.
Many clubs like the Kiwanis, JC’s and the Lions are looking for ways to volunteer. There are many college students looking for hours! At my local college, all students are required to do 3 hours of service a week for a mandatory class. Find out if you have this program at a college or University near you. I have had some awesome students help with interventions! High school students are looking for training opportunities. My high schools have had star tutoring programs. I simply call the school, ask for the counselor to see if any students are looking for such a placement. It takes a little creativity, but I think if your mindset is “Build It, They Will Come,” you will be surprised. And if you are extra lucky you will have an all-in principal like I have had. Sometimes you just have to ask. Maybe he/she will be excited to have a school-wide intervention program.
“What is RAZ and Waterford?”
I talked about two of my favorite reading support programs. This question is easy to answer with two quick links.
Waterford Early Learning: Run, Don’t Walk to see if you can get funds for the program. Email them and ask for Mike! Tell him Kathy sent you.
RAZ: We have found this a great way to get “Eyes on Text.” Also your students can access this program at home. Just a note, my 5 year old grandson taught me about this program and gave me an inservice on how to use it. It’s that user friendly!
And of course, grab that subscription to ESGI and use the code KIOSK to save $40 off your first year, but more importantly 400 hours!
ESGI is so awesome I wrote a song about it!
Thanks again for your attention and time. My full goal in life is to make this world a better place, one child at a time.