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E-books for Early Readers

May 29, 2024

Northfield students can now check out decodable readers as e-books through the Northfield Public Library. These e-books are accessible for free through Libby, the app that’s installed on all school-issued iPads.

Decodable readers are books that are written for beginning readers and use phonics to help them sound out words. The books reinforce the reading instruction students receive in the classroom.

“With the success of LETRS training and the use of decodable readers in Northfield schools—and the mounting evidence that decodable readers particularly help build both reading skills and confidence in BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) and ELL (English Language Learner) readers—I decided to spend about half of the juvenile e-book budget on decodable readers,” said Northfield Youth Services Librarian Emily Lloyd.

The Northfield district implemented phonics instruction this fall for all fourth and fifth graders, and more than 50 elementary teachers and staff have completed training in LETRS (Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling). The goal of the new reading curriculum is to address proficiency gaps so that all students read at grade level by the end of sixth grade—in alignment with the Northfield Promise and school district benchmarks.

Lloyd said she hopes to get the word out to families and teachers so they know that these e-books are accessible to all students with school-issued iPads and library cards.

“Northfield Public Library now offers more decodable readers in e-book form than Hennepin, Dakota, Ramsey, Scott, Carver, and Washington counties and the City of St Paul combined,” Lloyd said.

For more information or assistance, go to the Northfield Public Library website, visit the main library at 210 Washington St., or visit the new Library Oasis at the Northfield Community Resource Center, 1651 Jefferson Parkway.

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