We just started a new school year and I have already noticed some commonalities among the 60 students in third grade. The majority of students are struggling. We are a Title I public school and our kids have parents who are in jail, great-grandparents that are raising one or more generation, and kids that are being raised in below poverty conditions.
Our kids deserve more.
Through a grant, we make sure they have breakfast and lunch at school everyday. We have kids who walk to school and never miss a day because they may not get a hot meal at home. We send some of our students home with bags of food to get them through the weekend. We offer counseling services to students that need to discuss their home life. However, some never open up.
Some of our toughest students just want to be heard. We listen, advise, give hope, stick with, and hug an awful lot. We are a family to these students and we teach them how to respect instead of disrespect, how to love instead of hate, and how to be safe instead of reckless.
Using headphones to assist below grade level students with reading informational text will allow students to read books online that are on their reading level without being embarrassed by books that other children may tag as "a baby book". These headphones will allow struggling readers to read along and build confidence when they come to a word that they are not familiar with.
Confidence in knowing how to read can change a child's future.
Providing some below grade level reading material to our students who are struggling will help them to learn about topics in a way that they can participate in conversations about that topic. Which will build confidence and encourage them to tackle harder reading material a little at a time.
My hope is that with these materials, I will help students that are struggling at home and at school to build more confidence in themselves while at school so they may be able to deal with things that are happening at home.
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