School-Based Interventions for Struggling Readers, K-8: Volume 3

Cover of School-Based Interventions for Struggling Readers, K-8

Table of contents

(21 chapters)

As the third volume in the book series, Literacy Research, Practice and Evaluation, this text serves to advance knowledge of best practices for struggling readers in grades K-8. This text is comprised of 15 chapters from distinguished scholars who have profound knowledge about the evolving literacy needs of students today. Equipping educators with theoretical- and evidence-based practices serves to deepen their understanding and strengthen their pedagogy in a unified effort to advance the proficiencies of those who find reading difficult; this volume serves to promote reading success for all.

Purpose – Our purpose in this chapter is to argue for the importance of integrating reading and writing in classrooms and to provide examples of what integration of this nature looks like in classrooms across content areas and grade levels.Design/methodology/approach – In this chapter we provide an overview of the argument for reading–writing integration, highlight four common tools (skill decomposition, skill decontextualization, scaffolding, and authenticity) that teachers use to cope with complexity in literacy classrooms, and describe four classrooms in which teachers strive to integrate reading and writing in support of learning.Findings – We provide detailed examples and analyses of what the integration of reading and writing in the service of learning looks like in four different classroom contexts and focus particularly on how the four teachers use scaffolding and authenticity to cope with complexity and support their students’ literacy learning.Research limitations/implications – We intentionally highlight four noteworthy approaches to literacy instruction, but our examples are relevant to specific contexts and are not meant to encompass the range of promising practices in which teachers and students engage on a daily basis.Practical implications – In this chapter we provide classroom teachers with four concrete tools for coping with the complexities of literacy instruction in classroom settings and highlight what instruction of this nature – with an emphasis on scaffolding and authenticity – looks like in four different classroom contexts.Originality/value of chapter – Teachers and other educational stakeholders must acknowledge and embrace the complexities of learning to read and write, so that students have opportunities to engage in rich and authentic literacy practices in their classrooms.

Purpose – To provide educators with an overview of both generalized and specific comprehension strategies applicable to the content areas.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter is organized by (a) providing a rationale for incorporating reading strategy instruction, especially at the adolescent grade range and above; (b) discussing reading strategies that are appropriate for all content areas; and (c) describing reading strategies that can be used in specific content area subjects.Findings – Research-based strategies for scaffolding comprehension in content area subjects are presented in varying levels of detail.Research limitations/implications – The strategies discussed in this chapter do not constitute an exhaustive list of strategies or approaches to content area literacy instruction.Practical implications – This is a valuable resource for educators to obtain practical guidance in providing content area reading instruction for a wide range of student ages and abilities.Originality/value of chapter – This chapter provides significant research-based information for designing and implementing content area strategy instruction.

Purpose – To provide classroom teachers with the rationale and methods necessary to grow the engagement of struggling readers.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter is organized as a series of mini case studies.Findings – Provides a comprehensive description of the methods/practices used with each student or group of students in order to encourage methodological replication.Research limitations/implications – This is not an exhaustive overview of engaging methods, but the case studies should be familiar to classroom teachers and reading specialists. The authors carefully explain how the methods were differentiated for each student or group of students. In addition, the methods are described in sufficient detail so as to ensure that readers can utilize the methods and/or practices with their struggling readers.Practical implications – The chapter advocates that classroom teachers and/or reading specialists carefully consider motivation when planning intervention. The crafted case studies illuminate how such planning and delivery might be implemented.Originality/value of chapter – In order for struggling readers to engage with text for purpose and pleasure, a responsive approach is necessary. Such an approach considers motivation as a critical competent of effective intervention.

Purpose – To provide classroom teachers with an understanding of how children’s errors in reading provide evidence of sources of information that children draw upon to solve problems and monitor their reading.Design/methodology/approach – This chapter provides a theoretical discussion of sources of information found in text and their use during reading followed by examples from two case study children.Findings – One of the case study children primarily relies on meaning and syntax and ignores visual/print information. The other case study child relies primarily on visual/print information and ignores meaning and syntax.Research limitations/implications – Only two case study children are examined and only at the very beginning stages of reading in first grade.Practical implications – The decisions made by the teacher used in the examples provide valuable suggestions for classroom teachers who have a range of different readers in their classrooms.Originality/value of chapter – Teachers need information about how to shape children’s reading behaviors as they read text, solve problems during reading, and monitor their attempts.

Purpose – To introduce classroom teachers to an integrated digital literacies perspective and provide a range of strategies and tools to support struggling readers in becoming successful digital readers and multimodal composers.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter begins with the rationale for integrating technology to support struggling readers’ achievement, explains universal design for learning principles, and then offers specific strategies, digital tools, and media for reading and composing.Findings – Provides research support for the use of technology to provide students’ access to grade-level text, enhance comprehension, improve writing, and develop multimodal composition skills.Research limitations/implications – The authors do not address all areas of technology and literacy integration. Instead, they focus on key priority areas for using technology to develop struggling readers’ literacy.Practical implications – The chapter provides theoretical and research-based strategies and digital resources for using technology to improve struggling readers’ comprehension and composition that should be helpful to classroom teachers.Originality/value of chapter – Teachers need support in integrating technology and literacy in ways that will make a meaningful difference for their struggling readers’ achievement and engagement.

Purpose – To provide an overview of the development of an integrated classroom curriculum linking literacy, literature, science, and digital technologies designed to develop online literacies with struggling readers from disadvantaged communities.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter opens with a consideration of the theoretical perspectives underpinning the study presented in the chapter. Following this, the methodological and contextual frameworks underpinning the study design are described. Finally, findings from the study are discussed.Findings – The chapter discusses key findings and lessons learned related to the design of an integrated curriculum linking literacy, the content areas, and technology; the development of high levels of online reading comprehension skills with struggling readers; and the crucial role of peer-to-peer collaboration to develop the affective, cognitive, and social aspects of learning online.Research limitations/implications – Findings from the small-scale study indicate the potential of the Internet and other digital technologies to actively engage, motivate, and challenge struggling readers to develop high levels of literacy skills in challenging inquiry-based activities.Practical implications – The chapter provides teachers with practical examples of classroom pedagogies to develop the skills, strategies, and dispositions necessary to successfully exploit the potential of the Internet and other digital technologies as sites for deep learning.Originality/value of chapter – Teachers are struggling to successfully integrate digital technologies into the classroom curriculum. The chapter provides an insight into the development of an integrated curriculum and the learning environments necessary to develop online skills and strategies in authentic classroom environments.

Purpose – To provide educators with a new paradigm for teaching struggling readers that reaches, teaches, and increases comprehension based on authentic, accelerated/enriched, integrated instruction supported by brain research.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter highlights multiple specific steps based on extensive research that educators can take to increase reading achievement for struggling readersFindings – The instructional approach and methods identified in the chapter have demonstrated success in increasing reading achievement for struggling readers and prepares them to be successful readers in the 21st century.Research limitations/implications – The chapter focuses on a great body of research that supports the paradigm shift developed in the chapter which has been used to develop effective instruction with demonstrated results.Practical implications – This chapter presents a framework for rethinking traditional approaches for teaching struggling readers and provides a comprehensive approach for teacher educators, reading specialists, and classroom teachers to transform by using a new paradigm that leads to success.Originality/value of chapter – Originality centers on a new paradigm. Value centers on the impact this new paradigm will make on increasing motivation, engagement, and comprehension of struggling readers.

Purpose – Describes the various ways mobile devices are becoming part of the 21st century classroom and how best practices of reading instruction are applied to the use of these devices to support struggling readers.Design/methodology/approach – Situates mobile devices within the framework of other information and communication technologies (ICTs), especially as related to struggling readers. Following that discussion, uses of various mobile devices are addressed based on the learning/reading task rather than a specific device.Findings – Uses of mobile devices in the classroom often build on or simply “digitize” traditional reading/learning strategies. Other implementations of the devices can take students beyond such basic approaches to engage them in multimedia and New Literacies to create their own texts and multimedia projects that enhance reading skills rather than just consume them.Research limitations/implications – The field of mobile devices in the classroom is quite new and extremely fluid. It is certain that there are other great applications and strategies being implemented in schools all over the world. More research to gain further understandings is needed.Practical implications – While obviously not exhaustive, this chapter offers instructors and researchers an opportunity to become aware of the issues related to mobile devices in the classroom and to launch their own exploration of this field.Originality/value of paper – It is hoped that instructors and researchers will be inspired to try out some of the strategies and/or devices discussed and find even more inventive ways to positively impact learning for their students.

Purpose – To describe an instructional activity for developing vocabulary knowledge in clinical and classroom settings.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter describes the use of a strategy called Word Wizard in one-on-one tutoring situations, and the effectiveness of the strategy in terms of students’ word learning.Findings – Students learned over 60% of the words taught. The number of times a word was seen, heard, or spoken by students was predictive of the scores on one measure of word knowledge. The scores of students who were ELL were lower than native English speakers on another measure.Research limitations/implications – Each student’s words were different, and the students were from grades 2 to 11. While the strategy was successful for most students, it may be that it is more successful as a group activity with higher elementary and middle-school students.Practical implications – The Word Wizard activity can be implemented successfully in classrooms and clinical settings.Originality/value of chapter – The study provides further evidence for the implementation of Word Wizard activities in a variety of educational settings.

Purpose – The Continuum of Narrative Comprehension has been designed as a framework for thinking about text and for application to the construction of specific comprehension strategies.Design/methodology/approach – This chapter identifies several factors that undermine the teaching of deep comprehension and demonstrates the benefits of identifying underlying themes as a springboard for effective teacher questioning.Findings – This chapter addresses the higher order demands of the Common Core State Standards and the comprehension requirements of international comparison assessments such as PISA and PIRLS.Research limitations/implications – Advancement in reading demands that readers see past the mere details of text and unearth the significance of the author’s ideas in relation to the human condition.Practical implications – The primary resource discussed in the chapter is the Continuum of Narrative Comprehension which serves as a conceptual framework for clinical instructors to analyze text content and ideational complexity.Originality/value of chapter – The Continuum is a tool which can be used as a spur to student discussion but its ultimate value is the promotion of a lifelong view of reading as thoughtful literacy.

Purpose – Our purpose in this chapter is to argue for a rethinking of the way we approach diversity in the classroom. We argue that the diversity of contemporary classrooms is a positive resource that can benefit all learners.Design/methodology/approach – We open our chapter with vignettes from both authors to help the reader understand our own experiences of working with diversity in classrooms. We then define diversity and outline why it is important. Finally we provide overviews of different theoretical perspectives on diversity which are helpful for positioning diversity in positive rather than deficit ways.Findings – We provide evidence from the literature from different theoretical perspectives on diversity in the classroom and show how they are helpful for thinking about literacy teaching and learning in contemporary classrooms.Research limitations/implications – We intentionally highlight approaches to working with diversity, which view diversity as a resource rather than a problem that needs to be fixed. These align with our personal experiences of working with diversity in the opening vignettes.Practical implications – In this chapter we provide classroom teachers with examples from our various research and personal experiences to illustrate how the diversity of classrooms can be empowering for students and teachers alike.Originality/value of chapter – Teachers and other educational stakeholders must acknowledge and embrace the diversity of our classrooms today. Viewing diversity as a resource for learning is potentially empowering and transformational for all students.

Purpose – To describe four instructional components teachers can use to help create more inclusive spaces for struggling readers: (a) language use, (b) repositioning struggling readers as primary knowers, (c) making struggling normal, and (d) creating reading partnerships.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter describes research findings from studies of middle grades students in English language arts, and theorizes work with struggling readers on the basis of identity theories, research about identifying and utilizing students’ own funds of knowledge, and research about the conditions for building reading self-efficacy, motivation, and engagement.Findings – Provides detailed descriptions of how teachers’ language use, reading partnerships, making struggling a normal part of reading processes, and helping struggling readers become full participants in classroom life, including models, examples, and interview data with middle grades struggling readers.Research limitations/implications – Adjusting teachers’ language use in discussions of how to read, using students’ knowledge of reading and other topics from outside of school, enabling collaboration through peer reading partnerships, and positioning all students to understand that struggling with reading is normal and not necessarily a sign of low ability.Practical implications – This is a valuable source for classroom teachers who are seeking successful strategies for engaging and supporting struggling readers while also creating a positive classroom environment for reading instruction in general.Originality/value of chapter – The environment a reading teacher creates, including the language that teacher uses, can have a powerful and positive impact on struggling readers’ classroom identities, self-efficacy, motivation, and ability to engage successfully with reading processes in school.

Purpose – To provide teachers with an outline of characteristics typically associated with young adolescent students and the nature of effective teaching and learning opportunities appropriate at this distinct level of human growth and development.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter presents concepts associated with differentiated instruction and authentic learning activities; both are examined as central when exploring ways to close the learning gap between students of poverty and their more advantaged peers.Findings – The goals of establishing effective pedagogy and closing demographic achievement gaps based on test scores must be addressed in parallel since closing the latter without addressing the first does not produce lasting effects.Research limitations/implications – The authors present a sampling of researchers’ findings related to effective pedagogy for adolescent learners; these include conclusions on differentiated instruction, developmentally appropriate curriculum, technological literacy, inquiry, project-based, and expeditionary learning.Practical implications – Factors that make particular middle schools in a large urban area effective are examined as well as each school’s partnership connection with a college literacy program.Originality/value of chapter – Teachers’ adherence to research-tested methodologies appropriate for adolescent learners requires knowledge of valid, reliable sources, and successful models of implementation.

Purpose – The primary purpose of this chapter is to offer classroom teachers, administrators, and program specialists specific “big picture” strategies to support upper grade English learners in comprehending expository content-area texts that offer challenges not present in narrative or story-like texts.Design/methodology/approach – Two separate approaches for helping English learners to identify content topics, text structures, and key ideas that control text selections are described and modeled: the Advance Organizer and PLAN (Predict, Locate, Add, and Note).Findings – When learners engage in specific, step-by-step “big picture” processes to understand text structure, organization, and concepts/vocabulary (not relying simply on decoding, or sounding out words), they attain higher levels of comprehension and retention.Research limitations/implications – “Big picture” strategies are well-documented in research as having advantages for all learners who interact with expository text structures – but are especially effective for English learners who may struggle with unfamiliar text structures and higher levels of academic and technical content-area vocabulary.Practical implications – Specific directions for (and advantages of) implementing two big picture strategies that are adaptable to a wide range of grade levels and content-area topics are presented. Teachers can easily modify the strategies in flexible ways to personalize the use of these strategies for English learners in any content-area context.Originality/value of chapter – With step-by-step directions, templates, and examples of content-area texts to guide them, teachers can easily utilize these strategies with English learners using a whole class, small-group, or one-to-one intervention approach.

Purpose – To provide educators an overview of instructional practices in reading that are associated with improved learning outcomes with students K-8 who have a mild-to-moderate learning disability.Design/methodology/approach – The chapter provides a conceptual framework to view the process of reading, discusses foundational reading skills necessary to master word reading, presents two approaches to teaching comprehension, and highlights ways to effectively teach vocabulary.Findings – The content of this chapter presents empirical evidence as well as specific examples for clinical practice.Research limitations/implications – This chapter highlights key practices that have been extensively researched and found to be associated with improved learning outcomes for all students, including those with learning disabilities (LD).Practical implications – The chapter offers a wealth of information to help educators more effectively provide reading instruction for struggling readers K-8.Originality/value of chapter – The information compiled in this chapter will help teachers impact learning and reading outcomes for all of their students, particularly those who have a mild-to-moderate LD.

Cover of School-Based Interventions for Struggling Readers, K-8
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Literacy Research, Practice and Evaluation
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Emerald Publishing Limited
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