Lesson 11 - Instructional Materials Illinois State Library
Adapting Instructional Materials
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You may find that you want to adapt some reading material to the needs of the learner. For instance, we all have preferred learning styles. Some of us learn more easily by hearing, some by seeing, and some by touching and using. You can adapt most instructional materials to meet the learner's style. Read the materials aloud if your learner is an auditory learner. Use story mapping if your learner is a visual learner.
As you grow to understand the learner's style of processing information, you will be more successful as a tutor. In fact, adapting instruction to include all styles of learning will create an effective learning environment. For instance, you might read a recipe with a learner, have the learner read it back to you, and make the recipe together. Read more about learning styles in Lesson 12.
As a tutor, you can use your creativity to make the printed word accessible to the learner. Here are some suggestions of how to change the form of materials so that you can help the learner increase their understanding.
- Break a task down into step-by-step instructions.
- Reorganize and sequence units or tasks into a logical order.
- Translate important information into graphic aids like pie charts, bar graphs, maps and other illustrations.
- Make tapes of written materials.
- Provide written versions of taped or oral materials.
- Cut only the necessary portions of pages and paste them on separate sheets.
- Highlight or underline main ideas with a highlighter.
- Delete nonessential information from the printed page with a dark magic marker or by covering the nonessential parts as you read together.
- Make large print versions of regular materials, if necessary, or choose a larger font size when creating materials.
Reading teachers report that learners may find type with sans serif edges like this, easier to read than a type like this. You may want to experiment to see if your reader likes one print type over another.
Instructional Materials - Reflective Activity
Take a minute to reflect on the information you just read about instructional materials. Submit a reflective email discussing the questions below as they relate to using instructional materials in tutoring.
Everyone has trouble understanding the written word at some time. Remember a time when you struggled to understand a piece of information. What were the materials you struggled with? How did you finally comprehend the information? How can this experience help you with your adult learner?
Compose an email to your trainer. Put the title Instructional Materials - Reflective Activity in the subject line. Copy and paste the paragraph into the body of the email. Then type in your answer and send it. Completing this assignment is a requirement of your training. Your trainer will respond to you through email.
Book Lists and Recommendations
You may want to use books with your learner. On the following Web sites, you will find recommendations of books and other materials appropriate for use with new readers.
- Resource Room: Hi-Low Reading
This page provides links to high interest, low vocabulary resources.
- Tompkins County Public Library Adult Literacy Staff Recommendations
The Tompkins County Public Library has developed an adult literacy collection for adult learners to read.
- Trade Books for Adult New Readers
This Web site provides a searchable database developed by Kent State University's Ohio Literacy Resource Center (OLRC) in an effort to identify books published for children and young adults that would be interesting and enjoyable for adult learners to read in the classroom or in tutoring situations. The searchable database, known as Eureka!, contains over 1000 books, lesson plans organized thematically including lesson plans, teaching ideas and strategies.
- Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers
The Young Adult Library Services Association develops this list every year for young people who are reluctant to read.
There is no Learning Check with this Lesson.