Newsela has been a bit of a hero for me. As a teacher, you sign up for an account. With your account, you then set up a class for your students. Each kiddo gets his own logon information, and you are able to assign articles to your students. Here's where it gets really good.
Each article is available at 5 different lexile levels. The text becomes more or less complex depending on the level you choose! You can assign levels, and the kids can adjust them as needed. If a student is really struggling with a text, he can hit the minus button in the blue task bar to lower the level. If they are zooming through it, they can level up with the plus sign.
Most articles have a quiz associated with this addressing targeted anchor stardards. You can identify the anchor standards by hovering over the lightbulb icon at the top of the article.
The tests are automatically differentiated depending on the lexile level of the article, while still addressing the same common standard.
Seriously- just going to let that sink in. Automatically differentiated.
AUTOMATICALLY DIFFERENTIATED! I love this. I can't get enough of it. The needs of all students are met with similar articles and questions. We can still have class discussions about the topic, because they all learned about the same thing! All of this with really minimal teacher prep.
You can even annotate the text with (or for) the students.
There is no special tool- just use your cursor to highlight the text, and the colors and annotate field pop up.
You can track progress through your teacher account. It will show the student progress through quizzes, scores, and article lexile level.
I haven't used mine enough to have significant progress in my students, so this is the generic sample from the website. We definitely are not at 1223 quizzes taken! :)
I've used it a few times with my students and they have really enjoyed it. They get to use the coveted iPads, and I get to track their progress with differentiated material. The articles are non-fiction to address the common core non-fiction requirements, and also based in current events to increase student engagement. Best of all- it's free! Check it out.
Don't forget to enter the pencil sharpener giveaway!
You can enter until Monday, 11/10. The runner up prize is a $10 gift card to the store of your choice!