Spanish Language Arts and Reading (SLAR) Product Reviews

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Learning List has reviewed each of the five Spanish language arts and reading (SLAR) materials submitted to the Texas Education Agency in response to the Proclamation 2019. Below are brief discussions of each of the SLAR products. Learning List has reviewed each of the corresponding English language arts and reading (ELAR) products referenced in descriptions.

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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s ¡Arriba la Lectura! Texas is the Spanish-language version of HMH’s comprehensive “Into Reading” ELAR product. Content in ¡Arriba la Lectura! mirrors that of Into Reading, only it is presented in Spanish. Instruction is organized in modules that address cross-curricular topics, such as a “Guardianes de la Tierra” or “Global Guardians” module at grade 4 that integrates content from conservation science. Texts and assignments are the same in both versions of the product and the translations included in ¡Arriba la Lectura! are accurate and age appropriate.

McGraw Hill’s Texas Maravillas is the Spanish-language companion to McGraw Hill’s comprehensive “Texas Wonders” K-5 ELAR program. Instruction and resources in Maravillas largely reflect those of Texas Wonders. Some differences occur in the reading selections, with Maravillas placing greater emphasis on authentic Spanish-language texts and selections that reflect the culture of Spanish-speaking countries. However, when differences occur, the level of text complexity and rigor of related activities remain the same. Maravillas resources include a “Bridge to English” that supports teachers in modeling language transfer skills.

Pearson’s Texas miVisión Lectura is the Spanish-language complement to the “myView Literacy” comprehensive ELAR program. The two products are largely the same in terms of content and rigor. miVisión Lectura differs somewhat in that it includes more authentic Spanish-language texts and places a greater emphasis on Spanish-speaking cultures and individuals. For example, in a unit incorporating narrative nonfiction, students using myView Literacy read Buzz Aldrin’s “Reaching for the Moon,” while students using miVisión Lectura read “El Canto de las Palomas,” by Juan Felípe Herrera. Differing reading selections share the same level of text complexity, and the difficulty of related questions and learning activities is the same.

EduSpark’s Lengua, Ritmo y Cultura is a comprehensive, stand-alone SLAR program (i.e., no complementary ELAR product is provided) developed specifically for Texas students. Instruction incorporates authentic reading selections from a variety of Spanish-speaking countries, as well as works written specifically for the program by Texans of Latino ancestry. Across grades, Lengua, Ritmo y Cultura addresses foundational language skills (e.g., pronunciation) and builds reading comprehension using multiple genres of authentic Spanish texts. At grades K-2, the program emphasizes phonological awareness. At grades 3-5, students learn to write in Spanish and build their knowledge of phonics, spelling, and vocabulary.

Istation en Español is the K-5 Spanish-language component of Istation’s supplemental, online ELAR program for grades PK-8. Instruction is adaptive and develops Spanish-language reading skills using lessons that emphasize nonfiction texts addressing topics in science. Students complete the “Istation Indicator of Progress” (ISIP) in Spanish at the beginning of the year and each month thereafter. Based on ISIP results, the program prescribes specific learning activities, Spanish-language texts, and program usage time for each student.

Nearly all of the submitted SLAR products are designed for use in K-5 dual-language and/or bi-literacy instructional programs. As such, these products generally do not contain resources to support students’ transition from Spanish to English and do not reference the English Language Proficiency Standards (ELPS). TEA does not require Spanish-language products to address the ELPS.


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