In May of 2021 Idaho launched its K-3 reading project Striving to Meet Achievement in Reading Together or SMART in conjunction with the first annual K-3 Reading Summit. SMART is a multiyear cohort project that provides training and coaching to K-3 educators across the Idaho.

Idaho Striving to Meet Achievement in Reading Together (SMART) is a multi-year cohort project to train K-3 educators to provide instruction and intervention rooted in the science of reading. The goal of Idaho SMART is to train and support K-3 educators to provide science of reading aligned instruction that will improve the outcomes of K-3 students as evidenced by increased achievement on the IRI.

K-3 educators who sign up for SMART participate in facilitated learning utilizing Dr. Louisa Moats' Speech to Print text, guided implementation of evidence-based practices, and receive coaching to sustain changes in their delivery of instruction and intervention.

  1. Advance teacher knowledge of the science for teaching reading by providing facilitated learning opportunities for teachers to study and apply the science of reading research to everyday instructional practices.
  2. Train teachers to use science of reading aligned instructional materials to improve early literacy learning for students.
  3. Improve teacher implementation of science of reading aligned practices through synchronous and asynchronous coaching.

Teachers, paraprofessionals, and other educators who work directly with K-3 students participate in three strands of activities; knowledge, collaborating, and coaching. Each of these is detailed below.

Knowledge Strand

This strand will require teachers to independently read and study chapters of "Speech to Print" by Louisa Moats and actively participate in facilitated meetings and plan to intentionally transfer learning into classroom practice.

Additional learning on how to implement Tools4Reading practices is provided through four (4) 90 minute talking sessions on phonics and sound walls for instruction throughout the school year. Talking sessions will be provided by Mary Dalgren, author of Tools4Reading and scheduled after school hours whenever possible. Teachers will be provided with a Speech to Print textbook, workbook, and a set of Tools4ReadingĀ® teacher materials.

Collaboration Strand

In the collaboration strand teachers will dive into learning with peers and coaches through workbook activities from Speech to Print and relevant discussion topics about tools4reading implementation, curriculum alignment, and classroom instructional strategies. Collaborative groups will be formed in each region and/or school and meet both in person and virtually. Fall and spring in person collaboratives will be scheduled to allow for travel to and from regional locations. Travel and substitute reimbursement will be available to participants.

Coaching Strand

The coaching strand work will require teachers to meet virtually and in person with a state coach each month. Coaching will include facilitated discussion and technical assistance to support teachers to use Tools4Reading and apply new knowledge to grow early literacy skills for students in the classroom.

This is a sample pacing guide to provide context for the work in SMART. Plan to engage in reading and workbook activities monthly in addition to working directly with your coach. Activities and sessions are subject to change.

Sample Activities
Month Knowledge Tasks Collaboration & Coaching Tasks
August Assigned reading (chapter 1) SMART Kickoff Regional collaborative meeting
September Assigned reading & workbook activities (chapter 1) Tools4Reading session, coaching session, virtual collaborative
October Assigned reading & workbook activities (chapter 2) Tools4Reading session

Each school or district administrator with participating educators must attend three virtual meetings throughout the school year for the purposes of supporting teacher implementation, understanding teacher learning, and gaining resources and information relevant to your work as a leader in early literacy.

Community Meeting #1

The first meeting will support administrators in beginning to develop an understanding of the SMART project work teachers are embarking on. This meeting is a mixture of knowledge, resources, and collaboration. Administrators will be provided with leadership resources to support a shift in instruction that aligns to the science of reading.

Community Meeting #2

This meeting will focus on specific actions steps administrators can take to foster science of reading aligned literacy instruction at a school level. Guest speakers who have done the work on school wide implementation will share their experiences.

Community Meeting #3

The final administrator meeting will focus on partnership strategies administrators can use to engage their SMART coach to align the science of reading to school-wide goals.

Registration for the 2024-2025 cohort is scheduled to open in April. If you wish to receive a notification when registration becomes available, please submit your name and email information here.

Recommended Books
  • Essentials for Assessing and Overcoming Reading Difficulties by David Kilpatrick
  • How We Learn by Stanislas Dehaene
  • Language at the Speed of Sight: How We Read, Why so Many Can't, and What Can be Done About It by Mark Seindenberg
  • Reading in the Brain by Stanislas Dehaene
  • Speech to Print by Louisa Cook Moats
Online Resources