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5 Things Every Tennessee Educator Should Consider When Selecting an Online Literacy Program

5 Things Every Tennessee Educator Should Consider When Selecting an Online Literacy Program

Tennessee is one of many states that recognizes the importance of early literacy. Not only does a student’s reading ability directly impact his or her academic performance, it can also be a strong indicator of success later on in life, including the likelihood that students will graduate from high school, pursue lucrative careers, and lead healthy and productive lives. That’s why Tennessee included 3rd grade reading proficiency goals in its Every Student Succeed Act (ESSA) plan and established the Read to be Ready literacy initiative, which aims to increase statewide reading proficiency and promote reading.

As part of their strategy to improve literacy, many Tennessee educators are turning to online literacy programs to supplement their classroom instruction. Like traditional literacy instruction, online programs are designed to help students learn to read by encouraging them to take an active and engaged role in their learning, and they offer a slew of additional benefits to educators, such as the ability to monitor progress with student data reporting, the ability to assign work automatically, and the ability to offer students more personalized literacy instruction. If you’re a Tennessee educator wondering if an online literacy program could be the right fit for your classroom, take a look at a few common questions we answered to help you out.

1.  How can an online literacy program help my students become reading proficient by 3rd grade?

Tennessee’s Read to be Ready initiative set the goal for the state’s 3rd graders to achieve 75 percent reading proficiency by 2025. Educators in Tennessee know that, in order to meet this goal, it’s important to invest in building foundational literacy skills early on. But, even during extended reading blocks, working with each student is extremely challenging. Adding a proven online literacy program to supplement your classroom instruction can help you individualize each student’s learning experience when everyone is at a different reading level and help you track and monitor student progress so that you can make sure that everyone is moving at the right pace. 

Edmentum’s dynamic two-in-one literacy solution, Reading Eggs and Reading Eggspress, is designed to build and reinforce foundational skills in a rich, interactive online world aligned to the five essential pillars of reading: phonics, phonemic awareness, vocabulary, comprehension, and fluency. Beginning at the emergent level, Reading Eggs helps pre-K through 2nd grade students develop foundational literacy skills as they work through practice activities and lessons aligned to the five essential pillars of reading; developing writing, spelling, and independent reading skills; and learning to read for meaning. Check out this research study from a South Carolina school that improved reading proficiency levels using the Reading Eggs!

2.  Can I trust an online literacy program to really make a difference in my classroom?

If you’re about to invest in something new for your classroom, you want to be certain it’s worth the time and the effort. Who better to trust when it comes to getting the real scoop on what classroom tools work for teachers and students than a fellow educator? See what real Tennessee educators in Crockett County Schools have to say about using Reading Eggs in their classrooms:

“I feel Reading Eggs is very beneficial for my students because each student progresses at their own level. Feedback is given, and the students enjoy using the program.”

Cathy Shaw, 2nd grade teacher, Crockett County Schools

“My 1st graders love it! They ask, ‘Do we get to do Reading Eggs today?’ Also, they love telling me how many lessons they have accomplished. As a teacher for 23 years, I love having a technology method that kids love to use that actually is teaching them reading skills!”

Tammy Womack, 1st grade teacher, Crocket County Schools

"I like that each student works at their own pace. The program is perfect for a kindergarten class full of students at different levels. I can give individual attention to students while knowing the rest of my class is able to work on the program at their level, and are not sitting at the computer struggling."  

     —Tiffany Nelson, Kindergarten teacher, Crocket County Schools

3.  My students have the basics down, so what I really need is for them to read more books and build comprehension skills. How can my students get authentic reading experiences in an online setting?

There really is nothing like curling up with a good book—the smell and feel of the pages and the weight of the story in your hands—there’s something for everyone to love. But, in a world gone digital, an online library not only helps students become more comfortable with reading in an online format but can also allow you to offer your students a more expansive selection of engaging and appropriately leveled reading materials.

Complementing your already-rich classroom library, Reading Eggs comes packed with an impressive virtual library. Not only are lessons punctuated with virtual books and quizzes, but also, Reading Eggs comes stuffed with an extensive library of over 2,000 fiction and nonfiction e-books. Students can explore by genre, Lexile® level, and reading age, and they can have books read to them out loud with the “Read to Me” feature. Teachers can also assign specific books to students individually or to a group for shared reading or later group discussion. The program also features over 300 “Big Books” that can be used on interactive whiteboards for shared reading.

4.  I’m worried that my students could get bored or frustrated with an online learning program, especially my struggling readers. Can an online learning program hold their attention?

The well-established link between reading motivation and successful reading comprehension tells us that when it comes to developing reading proficiency, student engagement is not an optionit’s a requirement. Motivation can help a student’s reading performance and comprehension. But, learning to read can be a tough task, and for many early or struggling readers, before they can fall in love with books, there’s often a lot of frustration, anxiety, or even disdain that must be overcome. Online literacy programs that are built to engage readers turn learning foundational literacy skills into fun, meaningful experiences where students can feel successful and confident the more they learn. By providing a predictable format where students can independently make progress (that still incorporates variety through high-interest rewards and continuous encouragement), online literacy programs can help students build a positive relationship with reading and keep them motivated as they learn.

Students love Reading Eggs. From top to bottom, Reading Eggs is built to draw students in and get them excited about learning to read using fun, animated characters; encouraging and immediate feedback; and a multitiered reward system that motivates students to keep learning at every turn. Check out these six Reading Eggs features that will make learning to read your students’ favorite part of the day


5.   I’m a big fan of the Daily Five. Could an online literacy program work within this framework?

The Daily Five™ has become a classroom classic for obvious reasons. What’s not to love about a self-guided station-rotation model that gives students the opportunity to engage with text each and every day? But, when you combine a trusted literacy framework like the Daily Five with a proven, dynamic foundational literacy solution like Reading Eggs, magic happens. With the help of technology, you can instantly gather and monitor student data, assign work, and more. Take a look at how you can pair Reading Eggs with the Daily Five in your classroom.

Ready to crack into a proven online literacy program that’s easy to use, easy to love, and cost-effective? Try a free sample lesson now, see why educators in Tennessee love learning to read with Reading Eggs, and ask your Tennessee Partnership Manager about starting a subscription.'s picture
McKenna Wierman

McKenna Wierman studied Journalism at the University of Mississippi, and has worked with Edmentum since June 2016. She currently serves as a Digital Marketing Specialist, and believes that empowered teachers are the key to successful students.