One of the challenges in providing students with the most significant disabilities with access to the general curriculum is finding materials that link directly to the grade level content, but are written at a level that is accessible. As part of the DLM® project we have been building a library of companion texts that go with the exemplar texts called out in the Appendix of the College and Career Readiness Standards. These books are accessible, open-source texts that you and your students can read online, on a reader that uses epub files, or offline as Powerpoint files or printed versions of the books.
The books come from the collection of books at Tar Heel Reader. Many of the books were written by teachers across the U.S., Canada, and other English speaking countries. Please read the message about Tar Heel Reader below if you are not already familiar with the site. You will find a great deal of variety in the quality of the books and not all of the books are appropriate for all students. If you take some time to familiarize yourself with tarheelreader.org you’ll find you can choose which books you want your students to access.
A Word About Tar Heel Reader
Tar Heel Reader (http://tarheelreader.org) is a very large library of open-source, accessible, texts for individuals with disabilities of all ages. Tar Heel Reader was started as a way to address the extreme shortage of easy-to-read books on topics that appeal to older students. Books are contributed to the site by teachers, students, parents, and others from around the world.
There are books on the site that are inappropriate for some audiences. Reviewers do their best to make sure these books are marked with the CAUTION. As a result, students should NOT be sent independently to the Tar Heel Reader site. They should be sent to collections or sets of favorites that teachers create using the tools built into the site.
Teachers can avoid books that they might find offensive by limiting their search to books that are “Reviewed Only” and “Rated E/Everybody.”
Books in Tar Heel Reader are available as individual books for teachers to download or read using Powerpoint, and they are available as collections by grade level.
We encourage you to use other books or write your own books on Tar Heel Reader, but remember that it is a library that teachers visit to select books for students – and that students visit when particular collections of books have been identified.