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102 Most Common Non-Word Syllables

This 2-page document provides over 100 regularly used, non-word syllables used in English. Knowing these common word parts or "chunks" can improve students' accurate recognition and decoding of multi-syllable words.

Academic Word Finder

The Academic Word Finder is a free electronic tool from Achieve the Core that quickly identifies academic words in copied and pasted texts. It is not intended to "replace teacher judgment; rather, it helps to support the teacher and identify the most useful academic words."

Additional Comprehension Resources

These resources (found in the ESL library) are also useful for Comprehension instruction:

  • ESL Literacy Readers offers 40 theme-based stories, a learner page, and a teacher’s guide with ideas for reading activities and extensions

Additional Fluency Resources

These resources (found in the Comprehension section of this library) are also useful for Fluency instruction:

  • Britannica School Elementary offers non-fiction articles at Reading Levels 1-2 and related images, videos, maps, and learning games.
  • Center for Adult Literacy Text Library offers over 1600 “easier, medium, or harder” texts, on a range of topics, at grade levels 3.0-7.9
  • The Change Agent is a social justice newspaper that includes student-written articles (leveled according to readability), discussion topics, and lesson plans.
  • The Times in Plain English contains free, leveled “Plain English Version” articles about current world and national news or events.

These resources (found in the ESL library) are also useful for Fluency instruction:

  • ESL Literacy Readers offers 40 theme-based stories, a learner page, and a teacher’s guide with ideas for reading activities and extensions.

Alphabetics – Challenges & Possible Solutions

Common alphabetics instructional challenges and solutions developed by Minnesota STARs and Trainers.

Alphabetics Instruction for STAR/EBRI Volunteers

This handout describes what STAR/EBRI volunteers need to know about evidence-based and explicit alphabetics instruction. It also provides a routine for teaching the English letter-sound-syllable patterns that will help students read and spell words alone and in text.

Alphabetics: Research and Teaching Strategies

Research Digest No. 5 defines alphabetics, provides suggestions for assessment and instruction, and lists additional resources and references. 

Beginning Alphabetics Tests and Tools (BATT, 2015)

Beginning Alphabetics Tests and Tools (BATT) strives to provide a principled system for ABE/ESL teachers wanting to develop their students’ knowledge of Roman alphabet letters, English letter-sound patterns, sight or high frequency words, and transfer of those letter-sound-word skills to text fluency and comprehension.

Breaking News English

This website is a source of current event articles written at Levels 0-6. The printable PDFs and online quizzes and activities may be useful for Beginning and Intermediate level students.

Britannica School Elementary

This website offers non-fiction articles at Reading Levels 1-2 and related images, videos, maps, and learning games. The articles are categorized by many categories, and users can select the reading level, adjust the font size, email or print copies, and listen to the text with a Read Aloud option.

CCRS Reading Foundational Skills – Alphabetics

Are you wondering if the College and Career Readiness Standards (CCRS) address beginning literacy skills, including alphabetics? Check out these resources posted in the CCR Standards library under CCRS General Resources > English Learners & CCRS.

CCRS Reading Foundational Skills – Fluency

Are you wondering if the College and Career Readiness Standards (CCRS) address beginning literacy skills, including fluency? Check out these resources posted in the CCR Standards library under CCRS General Resources > English Learners & CCRS.

Center for Adult Literacy Text Library

An electronic library of over 1600 texts at grade levels 3.0-7.9. Users (teachers or learners) select from “easier, medium, or harder” stories and topics such as Health, Food, Babies, Children, Teenagers, Families, Advice, Non-Fiction, Fiction, Jobs & Work, Money, History, and Science.

Change Agent

This subscription-based (online and/or print) social justice newspaper is published twice a year (March and September). The Change Agent includes student-written articles (leveled according to readability), discussion topics, and lesson plans. It is useful for Intermediate, Advanced, and Adult Secondary level students.

Comprehension – Challenges & Possible Solutions

Common comprehension strategy instructional challenges and solutions developed by Minnesota STARs and Trainers.

Comprehension Instruction for STAR/EBRI Volunteers

This handout describes what STAR/EBRI volunteers need to know about evidence-based and explicit comprehension instruction. It focuses on teaching five strategies: 1) asking and answering questions, 2) finding topics, 3) identifying main idea sentences, 4) identifying key details or important steps, and 5) writing summaries.

Comprehension: Research and Teaching Strategies

Research Digest No. 8 defines comprehension, provides suggestions for assessment and instruction, and lists additional resources and references.

e-Advanced Alphabetics

NEW SLIDES RECENTLY ADDED! This electronic, screen-shareable resource includes Google slide sets (in PDF format) for remotely teaching compound words, common suffixes, common prefixes, and related word families.

Fluency – Challenges & Possible Solutions

Common fluency instructional challenges and solutions developed by Minnesota STARs and Trainers.

Fluency Instruction for STAR/EBRI Volunteers

This handout describes what STAR/EBRI volunteers need to know about evidence-based and explicit fluency instruction. It also clarifies how they can improve – but not necessarily perfect – students’ oral reading fluency of paragraphs, passages, articles, or books.

Fluency Techniques for STAR/EBRI Volunteers

This handout for STAR/EBRI volunteers describes three fluency techniques considered most effective for adult readers. All interweave the steps of explicit instruction for guided oral readings of paragraphs, passages, articles, or books.

Fluency: Research and Teaching Strategies

Research Digest No. 6 from the Appalachian State University defines fluency, provides suggestions for assessment and instruction, and lists additional resources and references.

FREE Rice 2.0

This game-like website asks questions and offers multiple-choice answers for eight subjects (Humanities, Math, Language Learning, Sciences, English, Chemistry, Geography, and SAT preparation) and multiple sub-topics.

Intermediate Word Study (2012)

This ATLAS-supported resource includes: (1) a public domain test for identifying students' approximate grade level performance in word reading or decoding, (2) a series of 'mini-lessons' for teaching multi-syllable decoding with compounds, syllable types and rules, common suffixes, prefixes, and roots, and (3) an appendix of student handouts.

Is Fluent, Expressive Reading Important for High School Readers?

This article examines the relationship between oral prosody (phrasing and expression) and silent reading comprehension for secondary readers. The study recommends teacher modeling and whole-class choral reading of passages from literature, social studies, and science content materials.

Making Sense of Decoding and Spelling: An Adult Reading Course of Study

This scripted, ready-to-print, curriculum package is designed to improve accurate and fluent word reading and word spelling. It is useful for Intermediate level students.

Morpheme Matrices (2018)

This resource is for helping students who are ready to move beyond phonics and simple words. It focuses on morphological awareness: how morphemes such as prefixes, Latin roots, Greek forms, and suffixes combine or assemble to form multi-syllable words and sometimes change meaning, part of speech, or usage.

Morpheme Matrices Crosswords

These crossword puzzles and answer keys accompany Morpheme Matrices, an ATLAS resource focusing on morphological awareness. Six of puzzles target Latin morphemes (prefixes, roots, suffixes) and two target Greek forms and related suffixes.

New Academic Word List (NAWL) Finder and Sorter

EAPFoundation.com offers a free electronic tool for finding, highlighting, and sorting academic words within texts. Their word source is the New Academic Word List or NAWL, a recent update of the Academic Word List or AWL. There is also the option of creating a simple, head word, or word family gapfill, where the found academic words become blanks in the text. 

New Evidence for Fluency Instruction

This summary reports on findings and conclusions from two recent studies about relationships between fluency and comprehension in adult readers.

New General Service List Finder and Sorter

EAPFoundation.com offers a free electronic tool for finding, highlighting, and sorting high-frequency words (of general service or everyday use) in texts. It includes 2801 words used frequently in both spoken and written English and serves as a foundational word list for deciding which highly used words are most important to teach.

Newsela – Comprehension

Teachers and students can sign up for FREE and unlimited access to relevant news articles and quizzes, at 5 different lexile scores, all aligned with CCRS reading anchors. This varied and vertical text selection allows an entire class to read, discuss, and comprehend the same non-fiction content!

Newsela – Fluency

From the Newsela homepage, teachers can sign up for FREE and unlimited access to printable news articles, about the same topic but at 5 different lexile scores, and all aligned with CCRS reading anchors. This resource is extremely helpful for fluency instruction!

Reading Skills for Healthcare Workers – Comprehension

This website provides 175 CNA (certified nursing assistant) and general healthcare passages and audios for adult readers at grade levels 5.5 to 8.5 (Intermediate level). All are CCRS aligned and include pre-reading questions, definitions of healthcare or high-frequency vocabulary, and text-dependent questions.

Reading Skills for Healthcare Workers – Fluency

This website provides 175 CNA (certified nursing assistant) and general healthcare passages and audios for adult readers at grade levels 5.5 to 8.5 (Intermediate level). All are CCRS aligned and include pre-reading questions, definitions of healthcare or high-frequency vocabulary, and text-dependent questions.

Reading Skills for Today’s Adults – Fluency

This website is a source of passages (Levels 0.7 to 8.0) and audios intended “to help adults become better readers and more informed consumers, parents, employees, citizens and community members.” It is useful for Beginning and Intermediate level students.

ReadWorks.org

ReadWorks provides a large, high-quality library of curated nonfiction and literary articles, along with reading comprehension and vocabulary lessons, formative assessments, and teacher guidance. Through this website teachers can access curriculum, lesson plans, and free training.

Sight Words

For teachers serving beginning-level adult readers and working on vocabulary, this website provides a FREE source of sight word flashcards, games, lessons, and activities. All are focused on the Dolch Sight and Fry Instant lists; two collections of words that all beginning readers (at GE K-3) should recognize without sounding out letter by letter.

Sight Words

For teachers serving beginning-level adult readers and working on alphabetics, this website provides a FREE source of sight word flashcards, games, lessons, and activities. All are focused on the Dolch Sight and Fry Instant lists; two collections of words that all beginning readers (at GE K-3) should recognize without sounding out letter by letter.

Sound City Reading

This phonetic reading program website offers free PDF files of phonics books, workbooks, wall charts, flashcards, games, and activities at five levels. Materials are designed to be used sequentially, from the Learning the Alphabet through Basic and Advanced Phonics Patterns; however, it is also useful for older readers at beginning levels.

Stellar Alphabetics Ideas

These “stellar” ideas for alphabetics instruction were collected from participating MN STAR administrators and teachers during 2009-2012.

Stellar Comprehension Ideas

These “stellar” ideas for comprehension instruction were collected from participating MN STAR administrators and teachers during 2009-2012.

Stellar Fluency Ideas

These “stellar” ideas for fluency instruction were collected from participating MN STAR administrators and teachers during 2009-2012.

Stellar Vocabulary Ideas

These “stellar” ideas for vocabulary instruction were collected from participating MN STAR administrators and teachers during 2009-2012.

Story by Story (2008)

This website provides 12 interactive, multi-media, online versions of Story by Story to use for FREE. They were developed by Charles and Pam LaRue and provide illustrated listening/fluency activities along with writing/typing exercises for short vowel and consonant digraph sound patterns.

Teaching Analogy Phonics (TAP, 2015)

Provides reading teachers and tutors with convincing background information and testimonials, a lesson plan model and template, other reinforcement ideas, and over 100 common or sequential phonogram and word family lists for immediate analogy phonics instruction.

Teaching and Assessing Understanding of Text Structures Across Grades

This article summarizes the research on teaching text structures and discusses implications for instruction across grade levels.

Text Structures

Each printable text structure activity provides six short passages and a worksheet for identifying each passage’s text structure (chronological, compare and contrast, cause and effect, sequence, problem and solution) and completing a related graphic organizer.

THE SOURCE: A Curriculum Guide for Reading Mentors

This resource from Just Read, Florida! was developed for teachers or volunteers working with children; however, sections of Part 1, Ideas for Building Readers, may be very useful for adult alphabetics instruction.

The Times in Plain English

This website contains free "Plain English Version" articles about current world and national news or events. All of the articles are edited by Arthur Schiff and grade-leveled according to Flesch-Kincaid. In addition to articles, the website offers Tips for Teachers, which provides text-dependent questions.

Vocabulary – Challenges & Possible Solutions

Common vocabulary instructional challenges and solutions developed by Minnesota STARs and Trainers.

Vocabulary 1 – Fry’s Instant Words, Phrases & Sentences

Fry's first 300 words presented in order of frequency and in simple phrases and sentences.

Vocabulary 2 – Academic Word Lists

Academic word lists 1-10, presented in order from most frequent to least frequent usage across content areas.

Vocabulary Instruction for STAR/EBRI Volunteers

This handout describes what STAR/EBRI volunteers “need to know” about evidence-based and explicit vocabulary instruction. It also clarifies how they can build or expand students’ Tier Two or academic vocabulary knowledge and usage.

Vocabulary Lessons

This online vocabulary curriculum includes 38 lessons. Each lesson is focused on 5 Tier 2 (or academic) words and provides a Knowledge Rating Scale, definitions, synonyms/antonyms, examples, and guided practice activities. It is useful for Intermediate level students.

Vocabulary Lessons as Google Docs with Quizlet

CrowdEd and Appalachian State University (ASU) have collaborated to make the original Vocabulary Lessons, which are now stored in a shared Google Drive as Google Docs. You can easily copy them over to your Google Classroom Drive and assign academic vocabulary lessons or activities directly to students. There's also now a direct Quizlet link so students can easily access additional interactive activities for each academic vocabulary lesson.

Vocabulary Units

Tier 2 words are essential for ABE students to know in order to read and understand the academic language used in print or online text. For each Lesson in this curriculum, there are Teacher Notes for modeling, Student Activities for guided practice and application to context, and Teacher Answer Keys for checking. Each Unit also has a Review activity.

Vocabulary Units Game

This vocabulary game is a companion resource for Units 1-4 of the Vocabulary Units curriculum. As students learn new words from each unit – or as a review of all – they can play the game to improve their knowledge and usage.

Vocabulary Workouts

This evidence-based curriculum provides 60 workouts for the most common Tier 2 words from the Academic Word List. Each one-page, vocabulary workout presents a headword (e.g., analyze), 1-2 related words (e.g., analysis), parts of speech, definitions, contexts, conversation practice, and writing prompts.

Vocabulary: Research and Teaching Strategies

Research Digest No. 7 defines vocabulary, provides suggestions for assessment and instruction, and lists additional resources and references.