Principal Shawn Emerson said the school will be shifting from the Treasures reading series to the Wonders reading series. The school has been operating under the Treasures system for roughly the last decade, and Emerson said the switch to Wonders is centered around the need to change with the times.
“It’s really just going to update everything we do and bring it to the future,” Emerson said.
With the introduction then removal of Common Core followed by Missouri Learning Standards, curriculum requirements had accelerated past where the school was with Treasures requiring teachers to do extra work to teach students what they are required to know. Fourth grade teacher Megan Frueh said this will allow teachers to stop focusing on adapting material to be timely and switch focus to the student experience.
“It has less prep work on our end so we can make sure students get the enrichment they need,” Frueh said.
Unlike Treasures, Wonders is a K-6 program that will allow students to build on what they are reading year after year with common language used throughout. This program will also feature a title teacher who will be tasked with working with struggling students. She will pull them into small groups known as Wonders Works to building reading skills with work concurrent to the main curriculum. However, what teachers are most excited about is this series’ use of technology.
Students will be able to read all stories, and work on most assignments, online allowing them to receive instant grading and easy access to the material they are working with. The students will also be reading from more current texts.
First grade teacher Katie Falconer said the content of the material should boost student engagement.
“This new series is more current, so it helps that students can apply this to their life,” Falconer said. “They can see things that are happening and current. The old series technology featured email, flip phones and fax machines and kids just couldn’t really relate to that.”
Most of all, Emerson said he hopes everyone will be able to notice progress in the form of test scores.
“You look at the end means, so when you look at our kids 3rd through 6th grade taking the reading portion of the MAP, hopefully in one, two, three years you can start to see the benefit of the new reading program,” Emerson said.