A recent study from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden found that intensive, daily instruction offered for a short time was more effective in helping struggling readers than the remedial reading programs typically offered by Swedish schools.
Over the course of three years, the Reading and Fluency Training Based on Phonemic Awareness (RAFT) study worked with a group of 100 nine-year-olds. Half of the children were given 40 minutes of daily, intensive reading instruction for a 12-week period. Instruction included structured exercises in linking letters to sounds, phonetic awareness, and fluency. The control group was given their school’s traditional reading remediation offering, such as tutoring or a special reading class.
The results of the study showed that the children in the experimental group made significantly more gains in all areas tested – word decoding, spelling, reading speed, and reading comprehension – than the children who received standard school services.
Read Science Daily’s coverage of the study here.
-Beth Guadagni, M.A.
Image used under Creative Commons by Elizabeth Albert