Using News ELA in the ELA classroom


Return to ETAP 623 ||| Natasha's Mini Course


Welcome to my mini course: Using News ELA in the ELA Classroom! If you are here then you are interested in potentially increasing the reading level of the lower 3rd of your ELA Class. All students are important, even the struggling ones. Throughout my time as an educator I have noticed that the struggling students often get overlooked. They very rarely make much progress, they just "go through the system". Helping an older student who is far below their expected reading level is difficult to do. It takes time, patience, and compassion. There will be times of frustration from the teacher and the student but if all parties continue to work hard anything can be achieved. Introducing your struggling students to News ELA can change how they feel about learning and reading and how your class functions going forward. It is very difficult sometimes to modify a text meant for an 8th grader to a 3rd or 4th grade level and to provide questions for them to understand. IF the gap is closed more it will make it easier for you as an instructor. The differentiation needed will not need to be as drastic and students will be more likely to work independently than to continuously need teacher supervision. This will allow you reach more students in the class as oppose to the struggling students taking up most of your time. INVEST in your students and those actions will pay off!

Course Description

Throughout this course we will go on an adventure together. You will be exploring a website called "News ELA".

First Destination: MOTIVATION
  • The WHY of this course.
  • What is the purpose of helping the lower 3rd? How can this ultimately help you as the teacher?
  • You will read articles and view videos about struggling readers and how to help them further. After reading a watching the videos each class, you will be required to post your thoughts and respond to others using Google Classroom. Basic knowledge of Google Classroom is a PREREQUISITE of this course.
Second Destination: CREATION

During this unit, we will briefly focus on creating a News ELA account.

Final Destination: IMPLEMENTATION

The final unit we will delve into implementing News ELA into a lesson. You will learn how to do it and utilize it in your classroom!


Is this Course For Me?

  1. Are you a current middle school or high school ELA teacher?
  2. Do you have students who a below grade level when it comes to reading?
  3. Do you have a desire to help these students?
  4. Are you familiar with using a computer and google classroom? (Prerequisite)

Well, if you answered YES to these questions then this course is for you!

Course Units

  • Unit 1: Motivation

Lesson 1 : Motivation: Reflect on prior knowledge and experience regarding the lower 1/3 of a class or struggling readers

Lesson 2: Explain and understand the importance of differentiated instruction and using News ELA as a tool

  • Unit 2: Creation

Lesson 3: Creation: Creating a Newsela login

  • Unit 3: Implementation

Lesson 4: Implementation: How to implement Newsela as a differentiation tool for a lesson plan

Lesson 5: Implementation: How analyze data received by Newsela

Return to ETAP 623 ||| Natasha's Mini Course


References and Resources