In order to truly understand what is happening in a story it is absolutely integral to be able to understand why something is happening. For this reason, Recognising Cause and Effect is one of the bedrock strategies featured in CARS & STARS Online, and recurs throughout every level of the program.
Read Aloud, a new feature of CARS & STARS Online, can revolutionise understanding. Instead of reading the text directly themselves, students listen to the program read it for them. This offers new opportunities for comprehension of stories and ideas presented, in a way unaffected by reading difficulties.
Whereas once a parent may have had to wait for scheduled interactions with their child’s teacher to really get a good grasp of how their child was faring at school, CARS & STARS Online offers unprecedented ways for parents to be informed of and involved in their child’s education – from anywhere and at any time.
The sequence in which ideas are presented in a text is one of the first things students must be able to ascertain in order to be able to fully derive meaning from it, and so the notion of Understanding Sequence is a crucial factor in reading comprehension and one of the 12 central reading strategies in CARS & STARS Online.
The ability to recall facts and details in a reading passage illustrates that the student has been paying attention, but also that they have gone some way to understanding what they have read before they have been asked to reflect on it further. This is therefore an important part of reading comprehension and one of the 12 reading strategies that make up CARS & STARS Online.
CARS & STARS Online is built on the core belief that no student learns exactly the same way or at exactly the same pace, and this knowledge informs the whole program – making it one built on differentiation as its central concept, rather than something added later to complement existing, more rigid instruction.
CARS & STARS Online is devoted to progress monitoring, a process that uses frequent and repeated testing of the same skills and concepts. Frequent formative testing in this way allows teachers to make quick judgements about the effectiveness of their instruction as a built-in part of the program, as students progress from Pretest to Benchmark to Post-test.
Data-gathering and utilisation, at the forefront of modern educational practice, are also at the forefront of the CARS & STARS Online program. Ongoing, accurate and transferable data collection at every stage of instruction and assessment allows the teacher to have a total picture of their class and individual students at any time, allowing instant identification of students requiring specialised care or instruction, and making differentiation a constant and ongoing process for every class rather than an afterthought.
A central plank of the twelve reading strategies taught in CARS & STARS Online is the development of the ability in students to not just be more fluent readers, but more discerning ones as well. With CARS & STARS Online, students will become informed and literate consumers of media – better able to see through the hokum and distinguish the truth for themselves.
CARS & STARS Online is fully committed to the ideal of the paperless classroom. It can be a completely digital experience for both student and educator. Students read stories on their devices and answer multiple-choice questions immediately afterwards by selecting options rather than marking worksheets or submitting written answers. Results are transmitted instantly with no handover process necessary.
In today's world of differentiated classrooms, teachers strive to deliver the best possible instruction to every student while being acutely aware of the differences in outlook, circumstances, experience and skill in every child. CARS & STARS Online is built on the core idea of offering every student instruction personalised to their needs. With CARS & STARS Online's advanced system of classroom management, one teacher can administer a class in which every student might be at an instructionally different level.