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Sound Walls to Support the English Learner: What Teachers Need to Know

Wednesday, April 5, 2023 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm EDT

Setting Up a Sound Wall for Early Learners: Get Started Now!

Presented by Dr. Antonio A. Fierro, VP of Professional Learning and Academics, 95 Percent Group; and Nereida Antunez-Gamon, Literacy Specialist for Elementary K-6, Gadsden Independent School District (NM)

Sponsored by Tools 4 Reading

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Throughout the United States, many early learners do not come to the classroom speaking or understanding English. In helping all students master the foundational literacy skills they’ll need to have successful lives, it is imperative educators use the resources and processes within their “tool kits” to support English learners. One of those resources is a sound wall, and while many educators understand how and why to use a sound wall, supporting English learners requires additional skill and knowledge.

This edWebinar shares valuable information about using sound walls in reading instruction with English learners. The presenters, both experienced educators, explore the process of using a sound wall in helping non-English speaking students first develop essential skills in the areas of alphabet knowledge, phonological awareness, print knowledge, and decoding—skills that English learners need to form the critical foundation for learning to read. Viewers learn:

  • How sound walls can provide additional support for the English learner
  • New ways teachers can identify spelling confusions—and instruct accordingly
  • What a Spanish sound wall might include
  • Ways to include vocabulary as you teach using a sound wall

This recorded edWebinar will be of interest to PreK-5 teachers and school and district leaders.

Dr. Antonio A. FierroAbout the Presenters

As VP of Professional Learning and Academics for 95 Percent Group, Dr. Antonio Fierro is able to apply his many years in the classroom and as a literacy expert to helping schools and districts teach reading to every student, regardless of previous experience or native language. His vast experience contributes invaluable insight into their products and services. Dr. Fierro is a former Texas State Teacher of the Year and was a member of the LETRS cohort of literacy consultants led by Dr. Louisa Moats for almost 20 years.

Dr. Fierro has contributed to several literacy curricula for English learners along with Tools 4 Reading President Dr. Mary Dahlgren. He is the co-author of Kid Lips, their curriculum that teaches the articulatory features of English phonemes to young children with additional support for English learners. His areas of interest include early literacy instruction, improving the learning experience of pre-service teaching candidates, and the research and practice that impacts English learners. Dr. Fierro is also dedicated to advancing the knowledge base and understanding of dyslexia and other reading disabilities as his son, Antonio Jr., has dyslexia. Dr. Fierro currently sits on the board of The Reading League.

Nereida Antunez-GamonNereida Antunez-Gamon is a Literacy Specialist for Elementary K-6 at Gadsden Independent School District in New Mexico. She is a National Board Certified teacher in English as a new language with a specialization in early – middle childhood. Nereida is also an LETRS and Tools 4 Reading facilitator. She is currently enrolled in Mount St. Joseph’s Reading Science Doctoral Program and sits on the board of the Southwest International Dyslexia Association. Her areas of interest include literacy instruction with a focus on English learners.


Learn more about viewing the live presentation and the recording, earning your CE certificate, and using our new accessibility features.

Join the Teaching Reading and Writing community to network with educators, participate in online discussions, and receive invitations to upcoming edLeader Panels.

Tools 4 ReadingAt Tools 4 Reading, we strive to equip educators with the knowledge, skills, and resources necessary to implement effective reading instruction in their classrooms. Our tools and professional learning experiences are grounded in research, easy to implement, and designed to improve literacy instruction.


Wednesday, April 5, 2023
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm EDT
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