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Previously, I taught a high school reading literacy class, and some students came to me on second or third grade levels. All of my students were reading below the ninth grade level. When we first began the class, I researched what best practices in teaching all five components of reading to high school students. Part of my program included Great Leaps Fluency. As a class, we had fluency partner time with Great Leaps at least three times per week for the entire school year. I used other measures for comprehension and vocabulary; however, I attribute much of the success of this class (over a seven-year period) to the Great Leaps program.
As I reflect upon our success, many students come to mind, but I will mention Daric and Jessica. When Daric came to me reading on a fourth grade level. He had no ambition whatsoever to finish high school. By the end of that year, he was reading on an eighth grade level. Not only did he finish high school, he also completed an Associate's Degree and is now in management.
Jessica came to me at a fifth grade reading level, and we had her on grade level when she exited the class. She is now a CNA; she also had no ambition of higher education coming into the class. Not only does the regular practice of reading fluently aloud increase their reading levels, but it also gives students the confidence they need to be successful in other classes.
Many students throughout the years have told me how they were unafraid after our reading class to be called upon to read aloud in class. Now as an instructional supervisor for our district, I encourage teachers who have struggling readers to give Great Leaps a try. I know it works!
There is something special about Great Leaps...It's the very defined, sequential nature of the progression of tasks that keeps them hooked. As the passages get longer and the phrases more difficult, they roll their eyes, say, 'Oh, no!' but with a glint in their eyes at the prospect of the challenge, dig in.
One of the amazing factors of Great Leaps is the results are so quick and dramatic. The students are shocked by their progress and this becomes self-reinforcing. Students ask to skip field trips and assemblies so they won't miss Great Leaps.
Students love the adventure and humor of the stories. Great Leaps does a terrific job of combining the teaching of word recognition skills with high-interest reading material. It provides opportunities for teachers and paraprofessionals to engage students daily in motivating reading experiences.
I must reiterate to you how wonderful I think your program is. I have close to 30 years of teaching behind me and this is a program that I think is really worth every bit of hype it gets, and does what it sets out to do.
When our daughter was in first grade my husband and I were called into the school office for a meeting. I was shocked when I heard the words come out of this teacher's mouth, she said that our daughter would never read and most likely, if she graduated, she would graduate with a special diploma. Our daughter was diagnosed with a severe case of dyslexia and also a short memory deficiency disorder. On top of that she had a severe case of ADD.
The school had no plan to help her succeed. No one had a plan. Ken was so kind to come to meetings to fight for Samantha on our behalf to no avail. Fast forward- Samantha was in four schools in six years. Her I.Q. was high, but her learning level low. She did not fit anywhere in the schools program. Ken took the time to meet with our daughter and started her on Great Leaps. We started the process every day at home. What a wonderful change to positively reinforce learning instead of negatively like her daughter was learning in the school system. Fast forward again up to last week. Our daughter graduated from high school. She had four honor chords, a decorated pin and 3.4 GPA. Thanks to Ken and Great Leaps, and a lot of hard work, we made it and will always be grateful.
Great Leaps is the greatest reading program I have ever seen anywhere. In February of 2000 my youngest stepson came to live with his father and me. He had never attended formal school, having been home schooled when parents were married, and his mother made sure she kept up with his studies. However from age 9 years to age 14 years of age after his parents divorced he had very little schooling. By the time he came to live with us it was discovered his reading level was less than 3rd grade level.
I did my research and discovered the Great Leaps reading program and ordered the Adult reading program for him. Within two months our son was reading at college level. His motivation that summer was to be able to read Tolkien's Lord of the Rings, and when we finished Great Leaps, he went on to read the complete series. Today he is capable of reading technical manuals as well as pleasure reading. He is now 29 years old, enjoys reading, works as a linemen and has a wife and two lovely little children.
I have been using Great Leaps Grade 3-5 with my grandson, who is in grade 4. He has a diagnosed learning disability and ADHD, and was a full two years behind in reading. When we started the program, he was reading about 70 correct words per minute, and could not read grade level material independently. After five months at five times per week, we are finishing the program. He has doubled his reading speed and comprehension, regularly achieving 140 correct words per minute on grade 5 level material, while also answering the comprehension questions correctly. I am so pleased with the program.
Although I am a special education teacher, I could not have achieved this success without Great Leaps. It's easy to use, all laid out, just add your time and effort.
Thank you for creating this program, and helping me help my grandson to make his "great leap".
We've been using the program for 2-3 months now & what we've witnessed with my son has been close to miraculous. His reading has taken off! I've recommended this program to many of my home-schooling friends, in real life and online. At least one of them has purchased the program. My initial contact with your company was a phone call to Ken. He spent an hour speaking with me and answered all my questions. That gave me a very positive impression.
The Yale University Dyslexia Program referred our son to Great Leaps when he was in the 2nd grade, 5 years ago. We worked on the program with him for a full year. He's now a straight A honor student, and found out just today that he achieved a perfect reading score on the FCAT examination, Florida's standardized test.
Dear Great Leaps,
I just wanted to share our experience and we are only 3 weeks in. I have a sweet, active 8 year old, little girl who struggles with comprehension. In my head, we just needed to read more and ask more questions. (This just frustrated her and me.) I had no idea there was more to comprehension than that. One of the many things that was identified which affected her comprehension was that she was not self-correcting when she read. I never picked up on that and didn’t realize that was playing a huge part in her lack of comprehension. After just 3 weeks with Great Leaps she is self-correcting herself when she reads. This seems like such a small thing but when I stop and think about how it will help in her with comprehension, I am so excited for her. She loves doing Great Leaps. Neither one of us are frustrated at the end and I am seeing incredible growth already!
Dear Great Leaps Community,
I wrote an update about 4 weeks ago and just have to write another one! My 8 year old has been doing Great Leaps for 7 weeks now. We started at the end of the school year, had lots of family in town and went on a month long vacation as a family. Through all of that it has been so easy and fun to continue Great Leaps. It’s even more fun because of the results I am seeing in Elsie. At 3 weeks I was seeing her self correct. I was ecstatic! At 7 weeks I am seeing her finally pause at periods which allows her to actually make sense of what she is reading. We’ve also seen her begin to tell stories and they have a beginning, middle and end. Before she started Great Leaps I just thought “she’s not a story teller. She doesn’t like to talk about her day. She’d just rather be playing than talking to me.” I honestly didn’t think too much about it and then this summer she is telling me what happened on a hike with her dad. She told me the entire process of how she made a keychain with her Grammy. Before when I would ask her a question about what she did or how she did something her response usually was, “I don’t know!” as she jumps up to go play. I don’t know if Great Leaps has just given her the confidence to say what she wants to say or if what she is learning about reading and comprehending, has given her the ability to recall and want to tell us about the things she is doing. Either way, I am so thankful for Great Leaps and the difference it is making in my little girl’s life!
Just checking in to let you know (as you probably do) that my son has increased his fluency in the past 7 weeks by an unbelievable amount. Today he read at 107 WPM! And the story he was only reading for the second time and single word list for the FIRST TIME!!! We religiously do GL, every day for 10 minutes, and I don't know what the magic sauce is, but thank you for the encouragement to get started. He's so proud of himself.
Teachers & Instructors
Great Leaps has made a tremendous impact on my students. Whether the diagnosis is Dyslexia, ADHD, or a Processing Disorder, all of the students have improved. With daily work, one 3rd grade girl moved from an early 1st grade level in reading to a 3rd grade chapter book with good comprehension in 2 months. Her parents and I were thrilled. One classroom teacher reported a middle school boy had greatly improved his fluency. Elementary students were excited to see their timed multiplication tests posted on bulletin boards with the rest of the class. Thank you Ken Campbell for creating such a wonderful, user-friendly program to help students learn. I look forward to using any new materials you produce!
Love, love, love the Great Leaps Program. As a special education teacher I am able to collect data that can be used with parents, school staff and in the development of data driven IEP's.
This program provides students the opportunity to improve their reading in as little as 6 minutes a day. I love seeing their faces each time they get to 'leap' to the next assignment. Thank you for developing a program that is very user friendly.
It's awesome when the students remind me I forgot to do their Great Leaps today!!!
I am in my 28th year of teaching students with learning disabilities in reading in a public school. I am more excited about Great Leaps than when I was introduced to Great Leaps as a graduate student at St. Cloud State University almost 20 years ago. Great Leaps is truly amazing at building reading fluency and is our "Go-To" first intervention when students begin to struggle. The students just love the stories and I do too.
I have been using the Great Leaps program for twelve years to help my students build reading fluency. The program can be easily and efficiently administered and has consistently demonstrated positive results. The students LOVE their Great Leaps time and it is exciting to see how this confidence transfers to all academic endeavors.
The Great Leaps program provides an easy way to individualize instruction in a small group. Each student works at their own level to address phonics skills, high frequency words and reading rate and fluency.
We have been using Great Leaps Reading as part of our RTI2 intervention with Tier II & III students. Our students love this program and we've seen substantial growth in their reading fluency by doing 1 minute timed activities in Phonics, Phrases, and Stories each day. Not only has Great Leaps helped our students increase their automaticity, but their accuracy, expression, and comprehension have also improved.
Research tells us that lack of oral reading fluency is a widespread characteristic of poor readers but a defining characteristic of good readers. Oral reading fluency is such a reliable indicator of reading comprehension, and Great Leaps provides our students with the fluency foundation necessary to achieve reading success.
As a teacher, I have found Great Leaps to be very easy to implement as well as time efficient and motivating for my students.
Dear Great Leaps! I am a Special Needs Educator at an international school in Bratislava, Slovakia. I started using your program this year with great results.
I have never before found such an effective tool as your Great Leaps Reading. I am presently using it with eight middle and high school boys in an alternative school...The guys enjoy it so much they ask every day when I will be coming to get them.
The passages are humorously appropriate...I am excited to see the impact this program will have on my students' rapid naming skills and overall reading fluency.
School is finally underway and the results have been astounding from the summer. Everyone has made progress (no summer slump) and it's showing with their confidence and reading levels!
I am an Orton-Gillingham trained tutor in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. I have been augmenting my students' lessons with Great Leaps for about 10 years. Although Great Leaps is primarily designed to help students with fluency, I find it to be even more helpful for the kids who struggle with accuracy. So many of these kids have struggled for so many years with their learning disability before coming to me for help, that they have developed the habit of reading too quickly while making several errors in their reading. But I have found that they tend to be goal-oriented and really enjoy passing each page of the Great Leaps program. Since the program requires strict attention to accuracy, the students develop the new habit of focusing more on being careful. Once their accuracy improves, their reading speed skyrockets.
My original K-2 Greats Leaps program is in shreds from using it with almost all of my students since I purchased it. So I just called Great Leaps this morning to order another copy.
Thank you so much for this wonderful program that has helped so many of my kids.
As a Reading Corps tutor, I use Great Leaps for students who are struggling in reading. Ever since the program was introduced to my students they have been nothing short of excited. The absolute joy and sense of accomplishment when they leap a page is proof that this program is needed in more reading classrooms across the country. The program provides many opportunities for praise, so even if students are not able to leap a page, they can still see the gains they make each day especially with the progress chart. As a future Reading Specialist, I am thrilled that I was introduced to this program that encompasses so many skills that unfortunately many kids struggle with today. I will definitely have in my professional library for years to come.
I am a Certified Barton Tutor and I use Great Leaps as a tool to help with fluency and accuracy. It has been a fantastic resource. Not only does it improve their fluency but it is a great confidence booster. They love to see how far they have come and how much faster they can read. It gives them such a great benchmark to see their progress.
Dear Great Leaps Community,
Just sharing a Great Leaps success: I’ve been working with a middle-school student who had been struggling with the traditional dyslexia intervention I do that usually works well, because he has significant difficulty with memory and hearing sounds accurately. He made progress for a while but then hit a wall as there were more rules to learn and apply. We added Great Leaps in December and when I checked his progress in May, the only significant improvement was in his fluency, so I suggested to his parents that we drop everything else and just do Great Leaps 4 times a week. I re-checked his progress today on a graded word list and passage reading assessment and he has progressed almost a full year since I checked him in May. It was the most significant movement in a year and a half! Overall, since he’s started 31 weeks ago, he’s gained 3 years in the passage fluency. (He placed low because of his errors and tendency to guess.) I’m looking forward to seeing his final results when we reach the finish.