|An Alternative Reading Programme for:
- Deaf and hard-of-hearing students
- Students with language delays or learning disabilities
- Students with autism or other developmental disabilities
- English language learners
Reading Milestones is the most popular reading programme of its kind. This successful alternative, language-controlled programme is designed to take readers to approximately a fifth grade reading level. It is especially effective for students with hearing impairments and language delays and is also widely used with others who have special language and reading needs, including individuals with learning disabilities, developmental disabilities, and English Language Learners (ELL). These students are aided by reading materials designed to match their language levels and which progress in steps small enough to ensure continued success in reading. Success from the beginning of the learning-to-read experience motivates students to read and to continue learning. Reading Milestones accommodates the needs of such learners and has been developed to maximise their opportunities for success.
The following features help ensure that students from many different populations can begin their reading experiences successfully:
- adjusted language level
- controlled vocabulary
- controlled syntax
The National Reading Panel Components
The Reading Milestones programme incorporates the five essential components recommended by the National Reading Panel (NRP, 2000):
- phonemic awareness
This fourth edition of Reading Milestones includes instructional and reinforcement tasks that focus on developing phonemic awareness and phonics in a language context in the Workbook activities, the Spelling programme, and the Teacher’s Guide.
The NRP reported that repeated oral reading with feedback and guidance and well-developed word recognition skills lead to improvements in reading fluency. Repeated reading, although not necessarily oral, is a part of almost every lesson plan in the Teacher’s Guide.
Extensive work on developing automaticity of vocabulary and sight words is presented in the Reading Milestones materials to develop fluency. Extensive work on the development of vocabulary concepts is part of every reading unit. Experiential activities and schema-based strategies are strongly recommended for the development of concepts in young beginning readers.
Text comprehension receives major emphasis in the Reading Milestones programme with activities reinforcing research-based comprehension strategies such as prediction, question–answer relationships, monitoring, and summarising.
Many students with hearing impairments and other special language needs experience a significant gap between their language base and the materials they are given to read. Reading Milestones was designed and constructed to minimise this gap by beginning with the simplest possible language to ensure initial success in reading and by increasing language acquisition (vocabulary, syntax, figurative language). Students work in very small steps, accompanied by constant reinforcement, to ensure continuing success.
Vocabulary, language structures, and comprehension skills are introduced in small and constantly reinforced increments. The vocabulary was drawn from several high frequency word lists (including the Dolch Basic Sight Word List). All the essential comprehension skills-literal, inferential, evaluative, and critical reading skills-are introduced and practiced in the Workbook Activities. Chunking (the separation of phrases by several spaces) is used in the first three levels to aid in processing units larger than single words. Reading Milestones begins at the most basic language level. The programme introduces vocabulary, syntax, and idiomatic language in very small steps and reinforces this learning before introducing new materials.
The instructional design used in Reading Milestones provides educators with sufficient information to make the reading series a self-contained programme. Detailed, step-by-step instructions for teaching each story are provided in an easy-to-use format.
What’s New in the Fourth Edition:
The core content of the programme remains the same and now includes many improvements. These include:
Reading Milestones Placement and Monitoring (RMPM) — Separately available, this informal test places students in the correct level of Reading Milestones and monitors their progress through the programme.
New Look — Many new illustrations have been added to the stories included in the Readers for all levels.
Teacher’s Guide — The Teacher’s Guide has been revised to include extensive information on recent research and best practices in reading. Strategies for teaching have been expanded and reformatted for clarity. Several useful appendixes have been added.
Additional Stories — Many new stories have been included with increased multicultural representation and full-colour illustrations. The number of stories in each Reader was increased for a total of 6 stories per book and 60 stories for each level.
Story Structure — Many stories were rewritten to include more definite story structure. Knowledge of story structure helps students focus on the components and aids in comprehension.
Story Page Layout — All sentences are complete on one page or on opposing pages to aid the student in developing fluency.
Workbook Activities — All workbook activities are now provided as reproducible worksheets that can be printed from the Reading Milestones Reproducible Materials Flash Drive, included in the kit. A boxed, printed version of black line masters is also available separately.
Spelling — The Spelling programme has been improved to develop phonological awareness skills, sound–spelling correspondence, provide additional practice in word recognition to attain automaticity, and improve accuracy in word spelling that will contribute to writing fluency. All Spelling activities are now provided as reproducible worksheets that can be printed from the Reading Milestones Reproducible Materials Flash Drive, included in the kit. A boxed, printed version of black line masters is also available separately.
Student Achievement Record (SAR) — used to record the student’s completion of each of the stories and activities in the workbook and spelling materials across a level of the programme. Space is provided for comments regarding progress and recommendations. A package of 10 SARs is included in the kit.
Word Cards — Vocabulary words taught in the programme are displayed in two formats: as reproducible PDFs on the Reading Milestones Reproducible Materials Flash Drive and as boxed, printed cards available separately. The cards are grouped and alphabetized by corresponding reader and numbered accordingly. Students can use the cards for practice in the Spelling and other lesson activities, in group games, and as flash cards in individual or group review.
Reading Milestones Reproducible Materials Flash Drive — Included in each kit, now reproducible PDFs are available for all Workbook Activities, Spelling and Word Cards.
- Ten Readers per level, 6 stories per Reader
- Vocabulary and syntax gradually increase in complexity
- Glossaries in every Reader
- Lists of new words and syntax
- Pictures used as visual cues for words
- Story themes include fact and fiction
- Multicultural groups represented
- Urban and rural settings used in the stories
- Reading Milestones Reproducible Materials Flash Drive includes reproducible PDFs of Workbook Activities for each Reader (1-10)
- Picture/word matching exercises
- Word/sentence completion
- Story sequencing activities
- Creative writing
- Semantic mapping
- Completion is documented on the Student Achievement Record
- Reading Milestones Reproducible Materials Flash Drive includes reproducible PDFs of Spelling activities for each Reader (1-10)
- Pretest and mastery test
- Range of spelling practice activities
- Completion is documented on the Student Achievement Record
- One Teacher’s Guide per level
- Step-by-step teaching instructions for Readers, Workbook Activities, and Spelling
- Sample lesson plans
- Pre- and post reading activities
- Comprehension questions
- Supplemental activities - e.g., related books, class activities, subject-related activities
Included in the Package: Teacher’s Guide, a boxed set of 10 Readers, Reproducible Materials Flash Drive containing reproducible PDFs of Workbook activities, Spelling, and Word Cards, a 10-pack of Student Achievement Records, all in a sturdy storage box.
Reading Milestones product brochure