Structured Literacy 'Clips Shorts Reel'

Kia ora koutou,

I'm an ESOL and Structured Literacy teacher at Whakarongo School, Palmerston North, Aotearoa.

My job is to support ESOL ākonga and Tier 2/3 students for reading and writing using a Structured Literacy approach. Our kura has found that due to the impact of Covid many of our younger tamariki are below where they should be in literacy.

Most of these students are also neurodiverse or have additional learning needs. They require 40 to 200 repetitions of SL learning to retain phonological awareness skills and utilise them automatically to be reading fluently. This high level of repetition is just not possible in a timely manner within a class or Pod environment.

To combat this I decided to create 'SL Shorts Reels' using Apple Clips. Clips provides the perfect amount of scaffolding with emjois and additional text to work alongside images of in class 'Code' resources that are very familiar to our ākonga. Having the Clips Reel allows for our students to practice their individualised learning at kura and home as many times as necessary, until their reading of cvc words and the simple sentence are automatic.

An important feature of SL is to review old learning and then add one new spelling rule, sound or grammatical learning point. Having too many 'bells and whistles' in lessons causes cognitive overload and confusion. I've found that Clips can be easily adapted to give certain students either more help with emoji images, or less depending on their specific learning needs.

I decided to develop the 'SL Shorts Clips Reels' based on the psychology of shorts reels on social media. My son has a YouTube Channel and his shorts can be viewed up to 5,000 times within a day or two. Looking at the analytical data on the Channel people then stay engaged until they see the entire shorts library. With the SL Shorts Clip Reel once they start, students become instantly engaged and actively reading. If several are connected at the same stage the same effect is apparent but they are consuming learning in a highly engaging format. They can then make their own SL Shorts Clips and become creators which is ultimately what I want them to achieve.

It also provides a fun and easy way for parents and whānau to support their kids with revision and homework. Most families are highly scheduled with after school activities and they need homework and revision that can be done quickly and frequently using Apple iPads or iPhones to and from school and other events. Anyone can spare 30 seconds to 1:30 for reading practice. If this is done often during the week the amount of repetitions quickly increases, as does their child's reading fluency and phonological awareness. Parents can also easily support their child at their correct level using the SL Clips Reel. Family often want to help but sometimes not knowing what or how to do this causes problems. I think using the SL Clips Reels would be a great solution.

I would love to hear how other educators are supporting their students to bounce back from lost learning time due to Covid and lockdowns.

Ngā Mihi,

Bex Street


All Comments

Posted on March 23, 2023

Thanks for sharing your approach and story. I think your Clips Short Reels would be fantastic for reading practice.

Posted on March 23, 2023

Thanks for the feedback Cheryl, I really appreciate it. I'm also looking into using morphology to expand vocabulary and aligning this with inquiry learning for esol students through Clips Shorts Reels.

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