California Educator

February/March 2024

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R E A D I N G I N P R I N T may give students an edge when it comes to comprehension and understanding, according to linguist and reading expert Naomi Baron. After all, reading on laptops or phones introduces distractions — messag- ing apps, video players and ads, for example — and much of what we see online is designed to be read quickly, as opposed to absorbed deeply like a book. Studies also suggest that we comprehend less when we read while scrolling and don't slow down to deploy time- tested study strategies like highlighting, posing questions and taking notes. But digital books can be powerful literacy tools, like- wise backed by research, especially when they come with embedded tools that aid comprehension, like dictionaries and text-to-speech features, or when they use motion and sound to enhance the story in ways that increase engage- ment and deepen understanding. Technology can also facilitate social learning activities like shared annotation; peer-to-peer discussion; and communal, video-based book reviews. In short, when used correctly, tech can help create readers with strong comprehension and analysis skills. We collected some of the best classroom strategies to boost literacy skills, differentiate your instruction and promote a love of the printed word: Tech Strategies to Create Stronger Readers Motivate reluctant readers, facilitate deeper comprehension and level the playing field among students of differing abilities By Stephen Noonoo An example from the Chrome extension Scrible, which lets users annotate websites with highlights and comments. 6 49 F E B R U A R Y / M A R C H 2 0 24 T

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