Site Combines Reading Comprehension with Science Education

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Earlier this month Pearson launched two new learning tools for K-12: an update to the company's WriteToLearn reading comprehension software and an enhanced version of its Scott Foresman's Science 2008 textbook series, which now integrates Web-based reading comprehension and writing instruction via Pearson's Summary Street.

Summary Street is an online that's designed to help students build reading skills. Students summarize texts they read, and these summaries are then analyzed using Pearson's Knowledge Analysis Technologies engine (KAT). With the new Scott Foresman’s Science 2008 textbook series, KAT can compare the content of the students' summaries with the Scott Foresman lessons and provide feedback on how well the students digested the information. But in addition to gauging their comprehension of the science lessons, it also provides feedback on the writing itself--from spelling to relevancy.

In addition to the new science series, Pearson also released version 4.0 of WriteToLearn, the company's Web-based learning writing and reading comprehension tool. WriteToLearn, like Summary Street, uses Pearson's KAT engine for automatically assessing student writing, including grammar, "meaning," ideas, organization, conventions, sentence fluency, word choice, and voice.

The new 4.0 release adds more than 200 reading passages from Scott Foresman Reading Street ad enhanced tools for teachers, including class management and student rosters.

WriteToLearn 4.0 is available now, and schools with subscriptions can receive the update free of charge.

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About the author: David Nagel is the executive editor for 1105 Media's online education technology publications, including THE Journal and Campus Technology. He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com.

Proposals for articles and tips for news stories, as well as questions and comments about this publication, should be submitted to David Nagel, executive editor, at dnagel@1105media.com.

About the Author

David Nagel is the executive producer for 1105 Media's online K-12 and higher education publications and electronic newsletters. He can be reached at dnagel@1105media.com. He can now be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/THEJournalDave (K-12) or http://twitter.com/CampusTechDave (higher education). You can also connect with him on LinkedIn at http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=10390192.

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