Just Words® supports states’ rigorous college- and career-readiness standards, including Common Core State Standards, by providing struggling readers—those who have not mastered the foundational skills of language structure typically learned in grades K-3—with strategies that will allow them to independently read and spell words and build the skills necessary to access and master grade-level standards.
As a word-level intervention program for students in grades 4-12, the alignment of many of the skills presented in the program fall outside of the standards outlined for those grades. Students identified for a Just Words class often are not able to engage in complex grade-level reading and writing tasks because they are not yet fluent readers or writers. Just Words provides these students with the foundational and language standards that are absolutely necessary to be able access grade-level text. In this regard, Just Words aligns to these key foundational and language standards:
- Know and apply phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words.
- Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.
- Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing.
Combining a synthetic phonics approach and explicit instruction in total word structure, students learn all English language letter-sound correspondences, syllable patterns (single and multisyllabic), and common prefixes, roots, and suffixes. They also engage in skilled practice with high frequency sight words (irregular words). Just Words instruction includes some aspects of reading fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Students are provided with opportunities to practice proper phrasing in oral reading and focus on reading for meaning.