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Our "campus license" allows you to install R-1 or Egorg Essay on any and all computers on your site, regardless of the number of students who will be using it. Instructors can put it on their home computers, too!
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Teachers: Pilot test Egorg Essay for free!
Willing to help us? You may use the software in your class or in your writing lab for no charge. You will get updates as they become available, for no charge.
What's in it for us? We want your feedback about how it supports your instruction-- what is working, and what is not.
Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the following:
- Subject: Pilot
- your name
- your school's name
- your school's website
- what grade and subject you teach
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Using Egorg Reading-1 for differentiated instruction
Differentiated instruction enables you to teach students with a wide range of backgrounds, abilities and learning styles in the same classroom.
Increasingly, the pressures of the “standards movement” (No Child Left Behind, as well as state goals) are filling classrooms with students of widely varying backgrounds, abilities, and learning styles. As a teacher, you know that when a student needs help, at best he or she will flounder until you can provide that help, but the longer it takes for help to arrive the more likely the student will become frustrated, angry, and embarrassed, perhaps rendering the lesson a total loss. How can you possibly get to those students “ just in time” with everyone working at different levels and at different rates?
The solution: implement a plan that has the students working largely independently of you, leaving you free to give your complete attention when they do need your help, all the while making measurable progress towards your goals. The strategy of differentiated instruction provides a systematic approach. Egorg can provide a regulated environment for independent work.
When we talk about differentiated instruction (DI), we talk about three parts of teaching: content, process, and product. Content is what you are teaching; in literature, it would be the particular work (or perhaps the level/difficulty of the particular work) that you are teaching. Using Egorg, you can pick literature at the appropriate level for each student. Grouping by ability or background becomes simple. This grouping helps you ensure that each student has met the curriculum requirements of each level before moving on to the next. While Egorg is adaptable for differentiation based on content, it is also adaptable for differentiation based on process.
Process is how you teach. Using Egorg, you can direct students to greater or lesser depth in the analyses of the literature, by individuals or by groups. For example, you may have emerging readers simply do prediction and summaries of chapters, or just fill in the plot arc. More advanced readers can add character analysis, finding common traits and opposing traits that lead to alliances and conflicts between and among characters. Your most advanced students can add more thoughtful responses to open-ended questions. This is not only part of the process, but because it is built in to Egorg, can also be part of the product.
Product is what your students produce to demonstrate learning. The graphic organizers Egorg creates allows you to perform quick formative assessments (graphic organizers are easy to scan quickly), and you are still free to use your own (or mandated) summative assessments.
Egorg's strength is its flexibility, flexibility that will help you effectively manage your differentiated instruction classroom. You can tier the lessons (for example, first have the students only analyze the main character, then in a later story they can analyze all the characters). You can group students by ability, interests, or even learning styles so that you can most effectively manage your classroom. Egorg is simple to use and has an excellent built-in help system. Once you teach your students the basics of using Egorg they are ready for independent work.
To teach your students the basics of using Egorg we recommend the “I do-we do-you do” approach of reciprocal teaching (although the term reciprocal teaching is now commonly used to refer also to the specific strategies of predicting, generating questions, clarifying and summarizing for teaching reading comprehension). Pick a short story or a story with short sections, and model for your students the pre-reading, character description and plot parts of Egorg. That is,
- make pre-reading predictions about the basic plot, genre and theme;
- perhaps take a stab at what will happen in the section you are about to read;
- read the section, and enter the character information about any characters introduced fill a plot event;
- put in some setting information.
For the next section, read the story with the students, but ask them for help as you fill in the information for Egorg. You are still operating the program, and projecting it on a screen where they can see it, or with them gathered around watching (depending on your resources and the size of the group), but you are asking them to tell you what to do. If your group is large, you may want to repeat this “ we do” step with the next section of the story.After the “we do” segment, let the students enter the information themselves. Keep in mind, if they are starting Egorg for the first time, they will have empty files (if you have them copy you as you go along, however, they will have a file as completed as yours). If they are starting with empty files, let them catch up to you by entering the character information, setting information, and plot events that you have already entered. Then, they can make the next prediction by themselves. After you read the next section of the story, have them fill in more information on their own, asking for help as needed.
Once you've answered their questions and they've successfully navigated Egorg's simple menu and help systems, they are ready to work independently.