Most struggling readers, including those with reading disabilities, have difficulties recognizing printed words. This unique, lucidly written book synthesizes the research on how children learn to read words skillfully and translates it into step-by-step strategies for the classroom. The author demonstrates how to plan and implement a coordinated series of lessons that address letter-sound pairings, decoding and blending, multisyllabic words, sight words, and fluency. The proven techniques presented are applicable across the primary grades; in addition, specific guidance is offered for working with older children who are having difficulties. A highly accessible guide, the book features reproducible assessment and instructional tools.
"This unique volume provides a thorough and comprehensive discussion of reading instruction at the word level, including practical ideas that reading specialists and special educators can immediately apply when working with students. O'Connor's in-depth knowledge of theory and research related to reading difficulties--and her ability to translate that knowledge into explicit, step-by-step strategies for the practitioner--make this a special and important book. It will be a useful text for any course within a reading or special education program that addresses instruction for struggling readers, and an important resource for practicing reading specialists and special educators."
-Rita M. Bean, PhD, School of Education, University of Pittsburgh
"An extremely valuable, well-written, and well-organized resource for general and special education teachers, tutors, and others who want to help their students with learning disabilities become fluent readers. The book effectively bridges the gap between research and practice, clearly explaining how reading instruction should progress and what to do when things do not go as planned. It provides hope for helping all students, regardless of their age or disability status. I used this book repeatedly during my student teaching experience in a special education classroom, and loved the results!"
-Anna Waters, MA, elementary school teacher-in-training and reading tutor, University of California, Riverside
"As a practicing school psychologist and state reading trainer who works extensively on preventing reading problems at the district and state level, I find this book to be an excellent synthesis of best practices for teaching word recognition to all children. O'Connor provides a sequenced framework for developing individualized lessons for both younger and older struggling readers. A quick-reference table provides a summary and roadmap of all the teaching methods and activities described. This book is an invaluable day-to-day resource for special and general educators. It is also a great preservice or inservice text for teachers, school psychologists, and reading consultants."
-Jim Weaver, MA, SPsyS, state reading trainer, Michigan Integrated Behavior and Learning Support Initiative
1. In the Beginning: Oral Language and Learning to Read Words
2. Phonemic Awareness
3. The Alphabetic Principle
4. Beginning to Decode
5. Word Patterns
6. Developing Sight Words
7. Reading Multisyllabic Words
8. Reading Words Fluently
9. Older Students with Learning Disabilities
Appendix A. Resources
Appendix B. Reproducible Forms and Checklists