Debuts To Help Struggling Adolescents Read, Write


A new site called has come online to help parents and educators help adolescent students in grades 4 to 12 who are having literacy difficulties improve their reading and writing skills.

The new site offers articles, classroom instruction material, advice, and tips for parents, as well as book recommendations, research and reports, interviews with children's authors, and a monthly e-mail newsletter service. Author interviews already include Jack Gantos, Lois Lowry, Brian Selznic,k and Christopher Paul Curtis. is a project from WETA Learning Media, a department of the third-largest PBS channel, WETA, which serves the Washington, DC area. The new site joins sister WETA sites,, and

Other features of include video libraries documenting instruction and case examples of school reading programs. To provide interaction and discussion, librarian and book reviewer Jamie Watson pens a blog called The Mash Up for the site. The site also provides an Ask the Expert forum.

Advisers for the project include various adolescent literacy experts, such as Donna Alvermann, University of Georgia; Fenice Boyd, State University of New York at Buffalo; Donald Deshler, University of Kansas; and F. Todd Goodson, Kansas State University.

"According to the latest figures from the Nation's Report Card, many students still struggle with reading," said manager Susannah Harris, in a prepared statement. "One-third of fourth graders and more than one-quarter of eighth graders still read below the basic level."

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About the author: David Kopf is a freelance technology writer and marketing consultant. He can be reached at

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About the Author

David Kopf is a freelance technology writer and marketing consultant, and can be reached at

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