READING MATTERS TO MAINE

Teaching At-Risk & Struggling Children to Learn to Read

Problem

Much classroom reading instruction does not follow best practices as defined by the National Reading Panel Report of 2000 and by 40 years of studies by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development.

WE CAN NO LONGER AFFORD TO TEACH READING BASED ON THE FALSE ASSUMPTION THAT LEARNING TO READ IS LIKE LEARNING TO SPEAK.

About Learning To Read

 

Learning to read is not like learning to speak.

 

 

Why Reading Is NOT a Natural Process by Reid Lyon, Ph.D.

“Nearly four decades of scientific research on how children learn to read supports an emphasis on phoneme awareness and phonics in a literature-rich environment. These findings challenge the belief that children learn to read naturally.”

 

Read Article

 

Classroom Instruction

One size does not fit all when it comes to reading instruction. As Priscilla Vail, a learning specialist, once wrote, “ONE WAY is a good street sign. It is not a good platform for teaching reading.”

 

Why not? 

“Research shows that about 40% of children learn to read fairly easily with any instructional approach. For another 30-40% of children, learning to read requires more effort. For the remaining 20-30%, reading may be one of the most difficult tasks they will have to master in their school years.” (G. Reid Lyon, Ph.D., Former Chief of Child Development and Behavior Branch of the National Institute of Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health. Testimony before the Committee of Labor and Human Resources, U.S. Senate, 1998.)

Teacher Preparation

 

From Dr. Reid Lyon’s 1998 testimony:

“…Most teachers receive little formal instruction in reading development and disorders during either undergraduate and/or graduate studies, with the average teacher completing only two reading courses… At present, motivated teachers are often left to obtain specific skills in teaching phonemic awareness, phonics, reading fluency, and comprehension on their own by seeking out workshops or specialized instructional manuals.”

 
Watch Reading Matters to Maine’s public service announcement  The Children of Maine Are Smart, The Teachers of Maine Are Smart to learn what students and teachers need.   Video
 

Read the 2014 National Council of Teacher Quality 2014 Prep Review. 

Maine’s score for effective teacher preparation has increased to a C-.  However, this is not sufficient to teach all Maine children to learn to read.  Read an analysis of many of the nation’s teacher preparation programs, including Maine’s.

Explore the NCTQ website
 

 

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