Wonders Issue 15                                         

McGraw-Hill Education | Wonders - The Power of Connection

Educator Newsletter
Issue 5, Fall 2021
Wonders News!

Hello, Wonders Community—

It’s hard to believe the holiday season is already upon us! Soon we’ll be spending precious moments with family and friends, taking time to relax and recharge, and thinking about resolutions to ring in the new calendar year.

Before we get there, take a moment to reflect on the progress you and your students have made this year. Navigating the learning environment during these times hasn’t been easy, but you’ve continued to demonstrate resilience, commitment, and dedication each day while striving for success with your students. This is something to celebrate!

In this issue, we are sharing resources that can help you build connections and make strides in learning and growth. Plus, there’s a brand new Wonders tool to explore!

Stay safe and stay healthy.

- The Wonders Team

New! Oral Reading Fluency Tool
Fluent readers can read text with reasonable accuracy, appropriate rate, and suitable expression. When your students are reading fluently, they are decoding and comprehending simultaneously. This makes oral reading a valuable assessment tool. Fluency should be assessed regularly since a student’s oral reading fluency rate (measured in words correct per minute) is a key indicator of reading progress.

The new Oral Reading Fluency Application (ORFA) in Wonders allows teachers to administer passages (in-person or asynchronously via a student recording) from the Wonders Fluency Assessment component. The ORFA tool captures students’ words read per minute (WPM) and accuracy; the results are provided in your class and student reports. The ORFA tool can be accessed in your digital teacher workspace: Assessement & Data > Oral Reading Fluency.

“The hallmark of a fluent reader is one who decodes and comprehends with automaticity. Fluent reading frees up a reader’s mental energies from basic decoding and allows a focus on new vocabulary and comprehension.” - Dr. Jan Hasbrouck, Wonders author
Strengthening the School-Home Connection
Over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, the school-home connection has been redefined a few times as educators and families did their best to support students in a variety of learning settings. While it hasn’t always been smooth sailing, we’ve all learned a lot about the importance of having strong and respectful relationships between students, their families, and their educational partners.

Research tells us that family involvement has many social emotional benefits -- and also contributes to academic success. But how can we foster those connections?

McGraw Hill curriculum specialist, Christina Quarelli, has used her background as a K-8 teacher and educational counselor to develop a list of tips and strategies you can use when forming powerful school-to-home alliances and connecting with students:

5 Ways to Build Relationships with Students and Families: Strategies for a Student-Centered Back-to-School Season

Read, download and share!

The Science of Reading
Chances are you’re still hearing a lot about the Science of Reading. It’s a complex topic – since it’s essentially the entire body of research evidence showing how our brains learn to read. It’s more than just phonics or Scarborough’s Rope or orthographic mapping. Several of the program authors of Wonders – notably, Dr. Timothy Shanahan and Dr. Jan Hasbrouck – have been working with us to help educators understand and clarify many of the topics associated with the Science of Reading. If you’d like to learn more, check out the resources below:
Inspired Ideas
Looking for resources to share with parents, research to inform your work, or inspiration from experts and peers? Visit our blog, Inspired Ideas. You’ll discover stories from educators, strategies from experts in reading instruction, and news from learning scientists and edtech experts. Here are three highlights to explore:

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In Your Own Words
Do you have a success story, an "a-ha" moment, or advice for other teachers you’d like to share? We’d love to feature it! Email us at wondersnews@mheducation.com and it could be in our next newsletter.

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And remember to share how you use Wonders in your classroom and tag #ReadingWonders.

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