CommonLit offers several tools and supports for students of different reading levels and needs, including special education students with IEPs (Individualized Education Plans).
CommonLit allows students to annotate and hear text read aloud. Students can hear the text read aloud in English (click Read Aloud, then the play button or a speaker icon) or annotate a text using notes or highlights (select the text with their mouse and click the highlight or T icon).
CommonLit also offers Guided Reading Mode (GRM) as a tool to support basic comprehension. GRM chunks the text into bite-sized pieces and asks students comprehension questions about what they've read before they can move on. Teachers can enable GRM for a whole class on a difficult text, or individually for students based on their need for differentiated support.
Finally, teachers can also differentiate instruction by assigning texts and lessons at different grade/Lexile levels to individual students or groups of students based on their reading and writing abilities. To learn more about how to do this within CommonLit, please see the FAQ article "How do I assign a reading to a single student or small group of students?"
Regarding assistive technology, while CommonLit does not provide an in-app screen reader, CommonLit works to ensure digital student assignments are screen-reader compatible. Blind and visually impaired students should be able to use their digital device's screen-reader technology to hear a story and questions read aloud; combined with keyboard tabbing, students can answer digital assessment questions as well. Furthermore, students who use speech to text can create their response on another site and then paste the response box on a CommonLit assignment. Read CommonLit's Accessibility Statement here.
Have a suggestion for further ways to support your students? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Common Accessibility Toolbar FAQs:
Can students start read aloud where they left off?
Yes, students can pick up read aloud where they left off by clicking "Read Aloud" to reveal speaker icons next to each paragraph/line of the text. Then, they should click the speaker icon next to where they want the reading to begin. CommonLit also bookmarks where teachers and students leave off in the text, so it should pick up where you left off in your last session when you hit play.
Can students access the toolbar on tablets and phones?
Yes, Read Aloud and Translate are currently available on mobile devices and tablets.