Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Hittin' the Wall
Day 18 of NaBloPoMo.
I don't know what to write. There. I said it. I didn't want to say it, but I did.
In lieu of actual content, I will tell you about this cool software application I found. It is called Live Ink. It is designed to increase reading rate and comprehension and ease eye strain for online reading.
It is pretty cool. It cascades text according to meaningful phrases and in a pattern that is easier on the eye.
Look at this:
Kind of cool, isn't it? You just click on the arrow to read the next page. It does feel surprisingly comfortable on the eye. You just open the reader, highlight the text you want, click on the parse-y thing, and there you go.
I downloaded a 30 day trial and have been using it. It really is easier to read online text. The best part? I decided to use it with Marley as a fluency exercise. Fluency is essentially 1) accuracy in decoding; 2) automatic processing; and 3) expression during reading. Fluent readers are more likely to be good comprehenders.
Anyway... Marley's teacher has been working with her on her fluency. I downloaded the Live Ink reader with some grade appropriate text from the Time for Kids website. I asked Marley to read some of the text without Live Ink. It sounded like her usual oral reading. I had her read more of the text on the Live Ink reader. There was a distinct difference in her pace and expression. I think it might be good practice for her, similar to another fluency exercise called Fry's Phrases. Having students read these phrases, not sentences, has been shown to improve their fluency.
Um... so now you know about Live Ink. I am considering paying for a subscription, which isn't inexpensive. However, I think I'd like to have it available for Marley and myself (eye strain relief sounds great to me) and I bet it would come in handy for all the tutoring I will be doing next semester at the community college level.
So, there is my product placement, reading lesson. I hope to have a more interesting post for you tomorrow. Although when I think about it, my paper is due at midnight. You might be getting my plan for a college reading and learning program!
18 down, 12 to go