Teacher Review for Newsela

Wonderful resource to engage kids in "real world" reading

Marcello S.
Classroom teacher
Rocketship Mateo Sheedy Elementary School
San Jose, United States
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My Subjects English Language Arts
My Rating
Learning Scores
My Students Liked It Yes
My Students Learned Yes
I Would Recommend It Yes
Setup Time Less than 5 minutes
Great for Creation
Further application
Knowledge gain
Small group
Student-driven work
Teacher-led lessons
Whole class
Great with Advanced learners
Low literacy
Special needs
How I Use It
This is an awesome resource, some quick highlights and tips: You can change the reading level of the same article (so that multiple leveled kids can read the same article). Creating accounts for kids allows them to track notes and quizzes. Be sure and click the "write" and "quiz" buttons on the right of the page students can take down notes right in the page and take a quiz on the article (see below for quiz ideas) Also hover over the "light bulb" for some teaching foci I use the above resources to drive student engagement, they love reading current news that they hear their parents and other people talking about, and to allow students at different levels to engage with the same material. I also combine NewELA with Google Drive and Edmodo for students to write summaries and answer quiz questions (you can have students click on the quiz on NewsELA then answer in Edmodo/Google Drive)
My Take
The amount of resources (the above features like varied levels, quizzes, and Spanish language articles) make this website an absolute must for any ELA classroom. Some of the pro features like tracking student/class progress, and assigning articles sounds incredible (but expensive and I don't use it). As a free user I use Edmodo or Google Docs to assign articles and track progress. I've loved seeing the progress this site has made over the years and am excited to see new features added (hopefully to free accounts). I would love to see some social features like comments and highlights (with comments) added in, but there are some risks there, perhaps having classes be able to share comments and highlights just with other classmates in a non-anonymous way.