When You're Stuck Trying To Find Appropriate Reading Passages... | The Literacy Nest

When You're Stuck Trying To Find Appropriate Reading Passages...

Hi everyone! Sorry it's been awhile since I've blogged, but I know you are really going to love the topic today. I'm here to talk about finding reading passages for your Orton-Gillingham lessons or reading intervention groups. It's one we all grapple with, am I right? We spend hours pouring through scads of reading materials only to fall short. Why does this happen?
  • OG follows a fairly strict progression of phonograms and skills. There is some variation among training programs, so the progression may be different, depending on your own training. 
  • If you are an OG teacher, it's been drilled in your head to ONLY use passages that match the lesson. There can be little to NO words within the passage you choose that haven't been introduced to a student yet. For instance, I cannot use r-controlled vowel words with a child I am doing a lesson on VCe long a. Why? Because r-controlled vowels are introduced much later. Not to mention, they are two different syllable types. Read more about VCe here. Read more about r-controlled vowels here
  • As an OG teacher or reading teacher, what is the ultimate goal for our kiddos? To be READERS, right? So it behooves it to find plenty of appropriate practice for these students to practice reading...a lot. And that takes time. Critical time. Every minutes counts.
Flashback to the days of my OG training. I would spend hours writing lesson plans. Then I'd have to hunt down a reading passage to match my lesson for my students to practice reading. What a process that was. I would look EVERYwhere. And even though I may have found a close match, I was never satisfied. I'd write my own here and there, but I craved more reading materials that matched the order of lessons I followed in OG. Not only did I crave it, it became a necessity.

Years later, still doing the OG thing, I still found myself dissatisfied. So what do you do when you can't find something you need?
  • You can whine and complain about it. (Other teachers love hanging out with you.)
  • You can spend a whole lot of money on various resources. (Ouch. That can get pricey.)
  • You can choose a passage that's one of those kinda, sorta matches.  (Who wants to do that?)
  • OR... You create your own. DING! (That's what I did.)
I did it! I wrote over 160 passages and every one of them matches the progression I follow. I'm not going to lie. It took me months to write them, and I don't really feel like writing anymore anytime soon. LOL. But what a relief it is knowing they are at my fingertips! Just look up the level, check the TOC, print and GO. It's an OG or reading interventionists dream come true. And now you can have them too!


I print my stories as I need them. I much prefer that than keeping hard copies. My OG kiddos keep a binder with all their stories in them. I bust out my three hole punch and pop those babies in their binder. They end up with a HUGE collection of stories to practice over and over. Talk about the perfect fluency builder. Even if you aren't an OG teacher, you'll appreciate that some kids need that isolated, decoding practice with controlled text that isn't too contrived. I really tried to write stories kids would enjoy and even mixed in some poetry and non-fiction. Check out the pics below.

Sooo... If you need passages for your OG lessons by level, I have five levels you can choose from, or you can grab the more cost efficient bundle. I am proud to call this resource one thing:
And guess what? You can purchase a hardbound copy of these passages and have it shipped directly to you! Order here


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  2. Hi Emily, I've just stumbled onto your blog and am loving it. I'm currently doing my training through the Dyslexia Training Institute, and am working as a a remedial therapist at a school in South Africa. I look forward to downloading your decidable stories bundle!

  3. Love your stuff, Emily, and use it all the time. Wish I could highlight as you suggest but with an ink jet printer that just makes a mess - am reduced to having kids draw circles instead :)

    1. Sharpe had a gel highlighter that does not smear. They're a little more expensive. I found mine at Wal-Mart, if I remember correctly.

    2. If highlighters don’t work, try highlighter tape.

  4. Thank you so much for the pictures, posts, and for writing such amazing passages. I have purchased them and they are an answer to my prayers and an end to the constant struggle of the match up saga you mention in this post. Your materials are awesome and I have enjoyed learning from you! I am in the process of another purchase order to get even more of your awesomeness at my fingertips!!

  5. I just joined the blog and so far I have seen and purchased several items that I plan to use in my classroom! The Silly Sentences, and Feb. Literacy Center Activities!


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