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I am a special education teacher in an elementary school, and nearly every good reading program available on the computer is prohibitively expensive for schools. I would like to make a reading program that is free, or as cheep as possible, for schools and students to use in order to practice basic reading skills. Here is what I already know how to do, and what I would like to build. I would like to know what else I need to learn to do in order to complete this project, and how realistic of a project it is to complete. Thanks for the help!
Also, if I am going to need more help, is there a way to reach out to the community for web developers, programmers, etc. to contribute in an open source fashion (with nothing going online until tested by me or other teachers of course and do you think there would be people who would contribute?
What I know:
A beginner level of perl and java.
A good understanding of how programs work.
Not much else.
What I want to build:
A website with reading games that address the 5 components of reading (phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary). Phonics and phonemic awareness will be the easiest to address.
I would like to have games. For example, I would like to build a game in which students hear a word like bat and see a partial single syllable word like b_t and a list of vowels like a,o,e,i,u, and students are asked to insert the correct vowel into the middle of the word in order to complete the word.
I would like for students to have accounts that they log into so that they can see what activities they have completed, what activities they need to practice more, and how much progress they have made.
I would like for teachers to be able to create accounts in which they can add students to a class list and assign each student a password so that they can click on a student's name and see how that student is doing on each activity.
I would like for students to be able to earn points toward some sort of prize like placing a decoration in a trophy room when they complete activities to a certain level of mastery.