Every hand raised

How Student Engagement Informed Our New ELA, Science, and Social Studies Products

The Newsela Team
Jan 14, 2020

As we enter 2020, our team at Newsela is more inspired and committed than ever to providing authentic content that’s accessible for every student, and that’s why we’re thrilled about the launch of our three new products: Newsela ELA, Newsela Science, and Newsela Social Studies.

The goal of these products is to help curriculum leaders across the country provide teachers and students with content that’s active and engaging, relatable and real. We want to empower teachers to select the best content for their students while giving administrators the assurance that all content is vetted and aligned to standards.

So when it came to shaping our new English Language Arts (ELA), Science, and Social Studies products, we turned to our data on how teachers and students use Newsela for insights and direction. The depth of content usage by teachers—and the high levels of engagement shown by students—gave us confidence in framing new products around these core subject areas.

Here’s a look at engagement with our content in the 2019-2020 school year so far:

Teachers

  • 310,520 teachers either printed or assigned an article to their students 

  • 1,180,640 teachers viewed their data

Students

  • 2,433,810 students read and took 10,719,126 standards-aligned quizzes (all of our articles have associated quizzes that are aligned to one of 8 Common Core Anchor Standards)

  • 4,139,985 students read 157,657,584 Social Studies articles

  • 2,128,419 students read 45,270,052 Science articles

  • 205,210 students collected 562,198 power words

  • 1,071,958 students made 18,457,519 annotations

  • 815,421 students wrote  2,220,816 responses

The articles teachers and students found most compelling also reflect the desire for real-world content that’s authentic, engaging, and relevant to student’s lives. A health article about the student vaping crisis tops the list of both our most-viewed and most-endorsed articles of Fall 2019, and other articles on both top 10 lists address initiatives to keep teens off their phones at school and  young people demanding action on climate change

When it comes to Science and Social Studies in particular, the most-viewed articles of Fall 2019 reflect Newsela’s goal to inspire students to explore the wonders of science and engage them with issues they care about. A science article about the discovery of water on a planet outside our solar system drew more than 85,000 views, and a story about the “dog mayor” of a California town found a spot near the top of the list with a playful riff on politics and public service.

10 Most Viewed Articles - Fall 2019 

  1. student-vaping-crisis

  2. hurricane-dorian-bahamas

  3. dog-mayor-california

  4. teen-greets-brother

  5. keeping-teens-off-phones

  6. brazil-amazon-fires

  7. youth-climate-protest

  8. instagram-cat

  9. student-inspired-shirt

  10. Greta-UN-climate-summit

20 Most Endorsed Articles - Fall 2019

  1. student-vaping-crisis

  2. hurricane-dorian-bahamas

  3. keeping-teens-off-phones

  4. brazil-amazon-fires

  5. youth-climate-protest

  6. student-inspired-shirt

  7. brothers-candles-charity

  8. Greta-UN-climate-summit

  9. teens-trick-treating

  10. 8-year-old-barber

  11. kids-hungry-lunch

  12. rocky-water-planet

  13. climate-change-oceans

  14. boy-crying-classmate

  15. insect-ice-cream

  16. plastic-food-packaging

  17. playstation-5

  18. girls-cyberbullied-more

  19. hurricane-dorian-dogs

  20. girl-saves-gorillas

The Latest from @Newsela

From an animal dentist to a group of snorkeling grandmothers who uncovered sea snakes, this year’s most popular @Newsela articles introduced students to stories of science, culture and animals. Read on for the list, and a few of the top themes 👉 https://t.co/qa1TTAG31L https://t.co/YWEGlIQCUG
January 24, 2020, 1:03 PM
Join the upcoming webinar 💻 with @EchoesReflect @EdTechEllen to gain the tools to facilitate classroom discussions on the role and impact of propaganda during the Holocaust and support students to critically analyze media in today’s world. https://t.co/m3QCKiUk5i
January 23, 2020, 7:27 PM
Looking for Pennsylvania custom curriculum? @Newsela created complimentary exemplars for Act 35, Act 70 and two ELA units. Visit https://t.co/3PbPFt4PBM to get access and learn how you can use these resources in your classroom. https://t.co/UbqzmRq2b8
January 23, 2020, 2:07 PM
We’re thrilled for a live webinar with author Natalie Wexler, Diving Into the Knowledge Gap. Haven’t read her book yet? We’ve got you! We’ll discuss technology's role in changing the literacy gap and more. Thursday, Jan 30 2pm ET/ 11am PT Register here 👉 https://t.co/GSzkUajI3j https://t.co/16jnVVTyPY
January 22, 2020, 2:07 PM

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