Saturday, January 30, 2010

How does STEPS Support work?

The Sequential Teaching of Explicit Phonics and Spelling, or STEPS, began as a way to help teachers learn how to teach children to read using explicit phonics. At first, we taught teachers face to face in workshops and in traditional graduate classes. The biggest problem has always been how to provide teachers support, answer their questions, and provide modeling exactly when they need it. As anyone who has ever sat through training knows, you can only absorb so much in those boring professional development seminars! When you really need help is when you're standing in front of your class with that flippin' manual in your hand!
We also began working closely with parents. Some had children in our tutoring classes. Some were parents of homeschooled children looking for help in being their child's primary reading teacher. Still others had children in STEPS classes in public or private schools and wanted to be better able to support their kid's learning.
We began to work toward building a training class that could be at the beck and call of a parent or a teacher whenever she needed it. Online training has been the answer! We've designed several classes that help you learn to use STEPS as you teach. Each one is subscription based. You get 24/7 access to your classes and are just a click away from contacting others in your class or us as you work through the class. For a free 2 day trial, try Just Games. To see more, browse STEPS Support.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Welcome to the STEPS Blog!

We're excited to start blogging! This blog is for teachers, parents, tutors, grandparents, EVERYONE who is interested in helping children learn to read. We're teachers and parents ourselves. Visit our official bio page for the whole scoop on who we are.
On our website, we offer online classes for parents and teachers to help them learn to teach kids to read using explicit phonics. We also offer materials to help you teach. Here on the blog, we plan to answer those day to day questions folks have as they work to help the children in their lives learn to read, write, and spell. Think... part Ann Landers and part Dr. Phil! If we don't know the answers to your questions, we know lots and lots of experienced teachers who can help us both. So stay tuned and plan to join us as we enter this exciting new venture!