"This is the best tool for our students when it comes to reading," Principal Connie Cook said.
"Ticket to Read," is an interactive online reading program, a product of the Voyager Expanded Learning Company. It is designed to strengthen the students' reading fluency, comprehension skills and vocabulary development.
Jeremiah Jackson is the son of Brigette Heil and Kevin Jackson, Brazil.
The Title 1 grant paid for the program, which allows Forest Park students kindergarten-fifth-grade to use the program at home with an Internet connection.
"Ticket to Read" offers students the chance to increase their reading level, by continuing to increase goals, reading passages as well as reading levels. While providing motivation with ticket rewards, which students receive when completing different activities. They are awarded different colors of ribbon based on the amount of questions they answer correctly on quizzes after each reading passage.
Trophies are awarded at the completion of a reading level, which is approximately 30-40 passages. The tickets can be redeemed to decorate a clubhouse, which showcases their trophies and ribbons.
"Every class has one hour each week to spend in the computer lab working on programs like 'Ticket to Read'" Title 1 Coordinator Debbie Zimmerman said.
With "Ticket to Read" working in conjunction with the Response to Intervention (RTI) Program, the results are speaking for themselves, which at Forest Park, has been a raise in test scores.
"RTI started at Forest Park at the beginning of last school year with kindergarten-fifth-grade," Zimmerman said. "It is continuing again this year to meet the needs of all individual students."
Jackson, a special needs student, shows that "Ticket to Read" meets the reading needs of all students.
"The program reinforces the reading skills the students are learning in their readers," teacher Natalie Wolfe said. "Jeremiah enjoys the program and is excited when earning rewards. He is driven to read because of it."
Like in many classrooms, Jackson is allowed to spend his free time, recess time or his "earned time" from the class reward system toward an activity. He chooses "Ticket to Read."
"A representative from voyager said that time spent on 'Ticket to Read' would increase reading ability," Zimmerman said. "This is a self-motivating activity which increases reading levels for all students no matter their level of reading development."
With schools now closed for Christmas break, Zimmerman hopes parents will encourage their children to continue working on "Ticket to Read."
"When a student says they are bored and has nothing to do, now mom and dad can say get on 'Ticket to Read,' or go to the library," she said.