Students Read More Than One Million Books Using Learn2Earn’s
Whooo’s Reading Social Learning Platform
More than 1M minutes of reading logged in one weekend alone
San Diego — Oct. 27, 2015 — Learn2Earn, a company dedicated to providing a 21st century alternative in the school fundraising and reading program spaces, has reached a significant milestone. In a recent analysis of student reading logs, Learn2Earn found that more than 137,000 students have read 1,167,532 books since September 2013, with more than 230,000 books read last month alone. Further review found that the weekend of September 19-20, showed students logged more than 1M minutes of reading. Broken down another way, that’s 885 days or 2.42 years of reading done in a single weekend.
“This milestone exemplifies the commitment of thousands of teachers who ensured that their students had access to our literacy platform, Whooo’s Reading, which makes reading fun and puts the decision of what books to read in the hands of eager students,” said Hayley Brooks, Learn2Earn CEO and co-founder. “Available for just over one school year, Whooo’s Reading is gaining tremendous traction. I am personally most excited about the staggering increases we have seen in our total number of minutes read as this school year has taken off. We believe that’s due to giving students the freedom to read any book they choose. Interest drives desire.”
Specifically designed with the motto “make sure the kids always win,” the lively Whooo’s Reading platform makes reading fun by giving students the power of choice, allowing them to read what they want while incorporating online game elements preferred by today’s digital natives.
“I honestly don’t know where we would be without this site,” said Lorie Barber, a fifth-grade teacher from Schiesher Elementary School in Chicago, Ill. “It has inspired my students to share their love of reading and it has given them a platform to share what they know. In an education world where we’re constantly looking for real-life applications, it doesn’t get more real than Learn2Earn.”
Students using Whooo’s Reading via their secure personal profiles are inspired to read and think critically, and when doing so, are rewarded with virtual “Wisdom Coins” to personalize and embellish their “Owlvatar.” This adds a sense of ownership to their work, which motivates them to try harder and empowers them to improve reading, comprehension and writing skills. Students are further engaged by their class’s interactive newsfeed, which gives them the opportunity to give each other helpful feedback on what they’ve been writing and displays the books and accomplishments of their classmates. With its social-media feel, the newsfeed is a real draw for students and encourages collaborative learning.
Teachers using Whooo’s Reading also have customization options, allowing them to create their own question prompts to engage students and promote comprehension. Equally accessible are the 72 preloaded questions aligned with all Common Core reading anchors (K-8) that come standard in each account. Teachers have the ability to review each student’s reading responses and give qualitative and quantitative feedback. These written responses are a more genuine, deep and nuanced way for teachers to gauge their students’ comprehension than the standard multiple choice quiz offered with other programs. Teachers can also analyze individual and class-wide progress as well as each class’s mastery of Common Core reading anchors from their data center. For a long-range view, teachers can monitor students’ reading level increases or decreases in the Lexile Levels of the books their students are selecting.
Learn2Earn is a young startup company focused on providing a 21st-century alternative in the school fundraising and reading program spaces. Unlike other reading or fundraising programs, their service is child-centric rather than educator-centric. That means that everything they develop is focused on benefitting the children who use it, on making reading fun, and improving specific reading and writing skills as outlined in the Common Core State Standards. In the area of fundraising, they offer something that most fundraising companies don’t: an educational platform for schools to use to raise money. Students aren’t selling; they’re improving their reading skills. For more information, visit https://www.learn2earn.org
AASA Statement on the Decline in 2015 National NAEP Scores
Alexandria, Va. – Oct. 28, 2015 – Today, the National Center on Education Statistics (NCES) released The Nation’s Report Card: 2015 Mathematics and Reading. The results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) assessments are compared to those from previous years to describe change in fourth and eighth-grade students’ performance in mathematics and reading over time. Performance results are presented as NAEP scale scores and as percentages of students at the basic, proficient and advanced achievement levels. The report also includes information about the performance of different student groups, as well as performance gaps by gender and race/ethnicity. NAEP results date back to the early 1990s. Daniel A. Domenech, executive director of AASA, The School Superintendents Association, issued the following statement in response to today’s announcement.
“The headlines today write themselves and cover all the usual angles: Our schools are failing. Our students are failing. We need more tests. We need fewer tests. We need better tests. Common Core is working. Common Core is failing. We need more school choice.
“We have had—and continue to engage in—these conversations, all of which have their time and place. But today, in this moment, when NAEP—widely regarded as the Nation’s Report Card—indicates that our students aren’t making the growth and achievement we would expect, perhaps the conversation isn’t about what we are doing as much as what we are not doing. And in this instance, we must consider the extent to which this set of NAEP data was impacted by the significant cuts to education investment at the local, state and federal level stemming from the great recession and held in place by continued poor policy.
“When it comes to our nation’s schools and the students they serve, we know that education cuts do not heal. Though we’re past the end of the great recession, education investment has yet to reach pre-recession levels. That means that our nation’s K-7th graders have spent the entirety of their K-12 educational experience to date under a post-recession funding climate, and that our 12th-graders have spent half of their educational experience in that underfunded environment.
“In a broader context, the federal share of discretionary spending dedicated to children has dropped by 11.6 percent (adjusted for inflation) since 2010. And while AASA doesn’t advocate unfettered spending as a silver bullet, we also do not deny that investment matters. Adequate funding is a critical component of any serious conversation about boosting student learning and closing achievement gaps, and today’s NAEP data might be one of the first times we are seeing a clear, national narrative highlighting the consequences of our recent education funding policy decisions.”
AASA, The School Superintendents Association, founded in 1865, is the professional organization for more than 13,000 educational leaders in the United States and throughout the world. AASA’s mission is to support and develop effective school system leaders who are dedicated to the highest quality public education for all children. For more information, visit www.aasa.org.