While I was playing guitar, I suddenly had an idea to improve the reading skills of young learners and people who are foreign to a new language. When I play guitar, I record my way of playing. Afterwards I listen back to it and improve the sections that were wrong. So why not try this with the reading skills of my students?


Typically students will learn letters, who turn into words and eventually turn into sentences. Here is what I did:


First I reached out to my fluent readers to read the word packages. I love when I can reach out to other students, to help me create content for other classrooms. To record these readings we used the GarageBand app.

Step 1

Next the students could listen to these recordings. Afterwards they can try to pronounce these themselves as many times as needed. Previously I would sit next to a student with a piece of paper and mark the words when they made an error. When I had to talk with parents, I could only show them how many mistakes their child had made. I wanted to change this process.

Step 2

So the next time when a student came over to take a reading test, I pressed the recording button while the student was reading. This gave me an incredible advantage to playback and let the students listen to his own recording. Now I had something to give to the parents on the parent teacher night. Gently I moved over to a more student led assessment, where they now correct themselves using this technique.


This has had a positive effect on reading skills and especially fluency has risen through the roof. The recordings have become part of the students digital portfolio to proof progression in their learning.


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Kurt Klynen

Kurt is an educator who started his educational career 18 years ago. Nowadays he develops learning experiences and teacher support materials that are simple and elegant using Apple technology, tools, and apps to improve engagement and outcomes. He loves building and delivering technology-based instructional materials, curriculum, or professional learning programs for educators and education institutions.
Kurt is a passionate educator and inspiring speaker.

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