As the 2020-2021 school year comes to an end, the term “learning loss” has been circulating far and wide throughout K-12 education. In fact, in a recent EdWeek survey, 60% of educators said there would not be enough instructional minutes in the day to cover the content and standards missed during the COVID-19 disruption. When those same educators were also asked how they would prioritize addressing these pandemic-related learning losses, 75% said they would specifically focus on the content and standards students will need to be successful.
In order for teachers to concentrate on the essential standards and skills students need to keep moving forward, educators must have flexible instructional resources like Newsela that allow them to bundle necessary critical materials, and scaffold appropriately to meet every students’ needs. But it’s not only about bundling the essentials. Exclusively focusing on standard and skill practice will lead to a skill and drill approach that disengages and demoralizes students. Rather, educators must also put an equal emphasis on content that students can connect with and keeps them engaged with their lessons.
Newsela helps teachers focus on key concepts in ELA, social studies, and science with content that is relevant and accessible for all students. Take for example Newsela ELA’s collection, Review: Standards and Skills, which includes content that engages students like this STEM text about Girl Scouts who build robots, and is organized to highlight key reading skills and paired with standards-aligned assessments.
In addition to curated collections, teachers can also build their own text sets using Newsela’s 15,000 texts and counting. By creating custom text sets, teachers are able to focus on the specific standards and skills they need for their lessons, while providing students with engaging content that builds background knowledge and is relevant to their lives.
Rather than focusing on what has been lost, educators should shift their perspective to looking ahead. With the right instructional materials, educators can focus on accelerating students' learning by meeting them where they are, and providing them with the right tools and content to ensure their success in the next school year.
Register for our upcoming webinar series to learn more how Newsela can support educators to accelerate student learning.