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Literacy For All with Readtopia and LessonPix

by Beth Poss

Readtopia from Don Johnston, Inc is a comprehensive instructional program designed for educators who work with upper elementary, middle, and high school students with complex disabilities. An integrated reading curriculum that spans across multiple domains of study including ELA, Math, Social Studies, Life Skills, and Science, Readtopia’s thematic units transform classic literature into graphic novels with age respectful images at seven levels, allowing educators to meet student needs from emergent-readers to paragraph readers. The thematic units provide the materials to support teachers in fully reaching students with all kinds of abilities, backgrounds, and knowledge.


Each unit introduces the theme with an engaging video to activate and build background knowledge and vocabulary, providing a mental model of key unit content and concepts. All units are supported by lesson plans aligned with state standards that include literature comprehension, phonics and word study, close reading, math, shared reading, independent reading, writing, and assessment.

In collaboration with Dr. Karen Erickson and Dr. Caroline Musselwhite, LessonPix has developed a series of 28 fringe vocabulary communication boards along with a 48-word core vocabulary board for use across all Readtopia units.

The LessonPix Readtopia boards are all free and available to download by anyone with or without a LessonPix subscription. LessonPix subscribers will also be able to easily edit the communication boards to meet the individual needs of specific students or to create additional learning supports and activities.

Download the Complete (30 Page) Communication Board Set

While the goal for students with complex communication needs is to have access to their own robust communication system allowing them to communicate exactly what they want, when they want and where they want, the reality is that many students in classrooms using Readtopia do not yet have a system. These LessonPix Readtopia aligned communication boards provide a low-tech alternative that can be used in conjunction with other systems or until a robust system can be provided to a student. The LessonPix Readtopia communication boards can also easily be provided to communication partners for modeling, displayed on an interactive white board, or used in settings where a high-tech system may not be practical or available.




















Free Readtopia Boards

Universal Core 48 Board

Bad Actions Fringe 

Bad Events Fringe

Body Fringe

Buildings Fringe

Categories Fringe

Colors Fringe

Comments Fringe

Community Fringe

Community Workers Fringe

Family Fringe

Farm Animals Fringe

Feelings Fringe

Give / Take Fringe

Good Actions Fringe

Good Events Fringe

Hunt / Fish Fringe

Landforms / Water Fringe

Movement Fringe

Other Characters Fringe

Other Things Fringe

People Fringe

Pets Fringe

Physical Fringe

School Actions Fringe

Sea / Ocean Animals Fringe

Traits Fringe

Transportation Fringe

Weather Fringe

Wild Animals Fringe