(NAPSI)—From elementary school through college, teachers are encouraging their students to listen to smartphones, iPods and iPads—both in class and at home.
Books that speak to students
Those devices are not just playing music and games. Instead, the pupils are using them with an app to listen to human-narrated literature, children’s books and required textbooks for school. The audiobooks and app come from Learning Ally, a national nonprofit that supports over 300,000 students with print disabilities such as dyslexia and visual impairment.
Educators as well as parents are discovering that audiobooks are remarkably effective in helping students become better readers and more effective learners. Teachers report that dyslexic students who have spent years in special education, hating and avoiding reading, became readers in a day once they could access their books with this easy-to-use technology.
Gaining access to the same books their peers are reading gets these students on an even playing field and helps them gain confidence in school. Many of them are now even reading “just for fun” for the first time in their lives. As one dyslexic student explains, “I like how listening reinforces the information for me. When I listen and follow along in the book, I get it from two senses—hearing and seeing each word.”
How teachers keep track
Learning Ally’s educational technology is also helping teachers maximize their students’ use of audiobooks and keep better track of what they are learning. The organization has developed a Web-based tool that enables teachers to administer and track their students’ use of audiobooks from its library of over 80,000 downloadable textbooks and popular literature titles.
The system, known as Teacher Ally, makes it easy for teachers to quickly find and distribute required reading material to students according to their educational needs. After adding titles to each student’s personalized “bookshelf,” teachers can download them directly to the student’s individual listening device or computer.
Teacher Ally then helps teachers track student progress, including how many pages they’ve read of each title on their bookshelf. Through an efficient dashboard interface, multiple teachers at a school can access their own profiles, add individual student accounts, optimize and personalize instruction, and follow up with each child. The system saves a tremendous amount of time for busy teachers—while helping students with dyslexia and other print disabilities get the most out of their audiobook learning resources.