Smarty Ants is an effective, research-driven solution that builds the English and Spanish foundational literacy skills South Dakota’s young
learners need to get started on the path to college and career success.
Differentiating the First Steps to Literacy Success
Smarty Ants® and Smarty Ants Español combine deeply differentiated instruction with a systematic, spiraling scope and sequence aligned to South Dakota’s foundational reading standards to ensure all students can master the five key components of reading in both English and Spanish.
Direct and explicit instruction teaches phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary (including sight words), and comprehension.
Instruction is automatically differentiated according to each student’s exact skill level, learning temperament, and learning pace.
Adaptive content system automatically adjusts the level of skill instruction and practice to keep each learner in the zone of proximal development.
Learning scaffolds and linguistic supports in Smarty Ants (including Spanish-language audio) are available for struggling readers and English language learners.
Smarty Ants Español provides full-Spanish foundational literacy instruction for your Spanish immersion, dual-language, and bilingual classrooms with both learning and linguistic scaffolds to meet the needs of all learners.
Teachers can further differentiate instruction to reteach, reinforce, or extend skills with targeted resources for small-group or whole-group instruction.
Smarty Ants and Smarty Ants Español are the ideal solutions for young learners in grades PreK-2 who are learning to read in their native language or are working to strengthen their foundational literacy skills in a second language.
Engaging, Interactive Blended Learning
Smarty Ants’ interactive learning environment provides the perfect balance of engagement, motivation, and pedagogy for South Dakota’s young learners, and the program’s flexible approach to blended learning is easy for South Dakota educators to implement in any instructional model, both in English and Spanish.
Maximize time on task by extending learning beyond the school day—even during school breaks.
Empower 24/7 learning anytime and anywhere, online or offline,with iPad® and Android™ apps.
Motivate students with interactive games, collectible rewards, and a customizable avatar.
Make parents and guardians active partners in learning with free access to the Parent Dashboard in both English and Spanish.
Engage families with the Daily Woof e-newsletter that highlights their child’s accomplishments and is available in their native language.
For teachers, on-demand resources make it easy to follow independent student work with targeted and purposeful instruction.
Smart Assessments, Successful Students
Although a child’s first year of formal schooling may be in prekindergarten or kindergarten, students arrive at these grades with a variety of background experiences and skill levels. That’s why Smarty Ants and Smarty Ants Español start with a quick placement test that begins at the student’s current grade level, increases or decreases lesson difficulty according to student responses, and identifies each learner’s initial skill level to determine individual starting points in the program.
As students work their way through Smarty Ants and Smarty Ants Español, the following features are at work:
Ongoing assessments continually monitor student progress and mastery of the South Dakota Learning Standards.
Formative assessments are embedded in the instructional routine, enabling progress-monitoring without impacting instructional time.
The system automatically adjusts instruction and activates scaffolds to meet students’ evolving needs.
Teachers can also administer a midyear assessment to determine if a student needs more remediation, is properly placed in the program, or can accelerate beyond the last level they completed.
Real-Time Data Reports, Smart Instructional Decisions
Educators have instant access to real-time student data with the robust reports in the Smarty Ants’ Teacher, Site Coordinator, and Administrator dashboards. On-demand, point-of-use video demos of each report provide instant support for teachers, empowering them to:
Easily set instructional goals and monitor student progress to make sure all students are on track to meet goals
Identify students’ skill deficits to target instruction for small-group or whole-class sessions using the resource links right in the report
Monitor students’ mastery of South Dakota’s foundational reading standards
Listen to student recordings to assess fluency improvement over the course of the year
Identify when students are ready to transition to reading comprehension in KidBiz3000®
The Smarty Ants system also automatically determines each student’s individual pace and forecasts the instruction time they need to meet instructional goals so teachers can adjust usage targets accordingly.
Foundational Literacy Research in Action
It’s critical that young learners start grasping essential literacy skills from the very beginning. Research* has shown that:
Students who read above grade level in elementary school graduate and enroll in college at higher rates than their peers.
Children who have poor reading skills at the end of first grade are unlikely to bridge the gap in later years.
Smarty Ants and Smarty Ants Español are research-driven solutions specifically designed to transform young learners into confident, capable readers ready to meet today’s rigorous college and career readiness requirements:
Developed by renowned experts with over 60 years combined conducting revered educational research: Dr. David Pearson, Dr. Robert Calfee, and Dr. Mia Callahan
Aligns with Bishop and Santoro’s Frameworks and contemporary reading research
*Sources: Reading on Grade Level in Third Grade: How Is It Related to High School Performance and College Enrollment?, by Lesnick, Goerge, Smithgall, and Gwynne and Learning to read and write: A longitudinal study of 54 children from first through fourth grades, by C. Juel.
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