I’ve begun reposting the best posts from the first half of this year.  You can see all my best posts from the past fifteen years here.




I, like many ELL teachers, have long known about Sandra Heyer’s True Stories series of books for English Language Learners.

Of course, there are lots of teaching materials out there, and I had never really gotten around to take a closer look.

I had, however, known enough about them to arrange for our school to purchase some over the past summer – I figured they might be helpful to our teachers who were teaching ELLs for the first time.

Instead of helping those teachers, though, I’ve found them of immense use to me!

They’re very accessible and high-interest.  And one way they are perfect for my classroom is that, since I have a ratio of one peer tutor for every one or two students, I can have everybody working on a different level book appropriate for their English-proficiency!  The books are designed in a way that, with minimal direction from me, peer tutors can easily lead students through them.

They aren’t the central focus of my class, but they are a nice change once day each week.

If you click on the earlier link, you can see lots of samples from the series.

It did get me wondering if there were other book series like True Stories that had multiple versions in different levels.

Do you know of any?


Reader Tanya pointed out that “New Readers Press Novel Scenes and “That’s Life!” are also awesome in the same vein.” You can find them here.