READING IS ROCKET
     SCIENCE
Cynthia R. Smith, M.A., CCC-SLP
    Katherine D. Smith, B.A.
BEGINNER'S MIND
!
Reading Is Rocket Science



In medicine, if research found new ways to save lives, health care
professionals would adopt ...
!   !
Reading Is Rocket Science


Scientists now estimate that fully 95 percent of all children can be
taught to read...Yet, in ...
Reading Is Rocket Science

Perhaps the dubious quality of past educational research
has justified the prevalent cynicism am...
Reading Is Rocket Science



The tragedy here is that most reading failure is unnecessary. We
now know that classroom teac...
Tragic because not only reading is adversely impacted
Reading Is Rocket Science

In the words of Keith Stanovich (Adams, 1990, pp. 59-60):
Slow reading acquisition has cognitiv...
Children who can crack the code, read more words, learn
more vocabulary, comprehend more, are motivated to read,
and enjoy...
Reading Is Rocket Science

              Research should guide the profession

Teachers must be educated to identify, read...
Reading Is Rocket Science

Examples of popular misconceptions include:
  Reading instruction is only needed until third gr...
Reading Is Rocket Science

                          Outcomes of Retention
The idea of giving a child another year to "cat...
Reading Is Rocket Science
                  Outcomes of Retention (con.)

Grade retention has a negative impact on all are...
Reading Is Rocket Science



Teaching reading is a job for an expert...[because] learning to read
is a complex linguistic ...
Reading Is Rocket Science


Some children learn language concepts and their application very
easily in spite of incidental...
Reading Is Rocket Science



...to understand printed language well enough to teach it
explicitly requires disciplined stu...
Reading Is Rocket Science



Expert teaching of reading requires knowledge of language structure
at all levels. Without su...
Reading Is Rocket Science
Reading Is Rocket Science
                          Reading vs. Literacy
               Reading = “getting meaning from pr...
Reading Is Rocket Science
                                Literacy

   ...dimensions of literacy entail the achievement of...
Reading Is Rocket Science




                   The starting point for literacy is
                             reading s...
Reading Is Rocket Science


             Learning to read builds on cognitive,
             linguistic, and social skills ...
Reading Is Rocket Science


Children are routinely subjected to teaching
practices that have not been tested or proven
effe...
Reading Is Rocket Science


Effective teachers of reading raise awareness
and proficiency with every level of language
organ...
Reading Is Rocket Science




Only recently has basic research allowed the community of
reading scientists and educators t...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

What did the National Reading Panel do?
 Specifically, congress asked the panel to:
• Review all th...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

Big Ideas in Beginning Reading (BIBR) focuses on
the five BIG IDEAS of early literacy:
     Phonemi...
5 Big Ideas of Reading
What makes a Big Idea a Big Idea?
5 Big Ideas of Reading

              What is Phonemic Awareness?


   An understanding that a single-syllable word such a...
5 Big Ideas of Reading
Phonological Awareness Continuum

                                                  Deletion
                             ...
5 Big Ideas of Reading


            Examples of Phonemic Awareness Skills:

Blending: What word am I trying to say? Mmmm....
Critical Features of Phonemic Awareness Instruction
5 Big Ideas of Reading

Research indicates that, without direct instructional support,
phonemic awareness eludes roughly 2...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

                 What is Alphabetic Principle?

       The alphabetic principle is composed
      ...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

               Why Alphabetic Principle?

      Letter-sound knowledge is prerequisite to word
   ...
Alphabetic Principle skills
Examples of alphabetic principle skills:
  Letter-sound associations: What is the sound of thi...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

Critical Features of Alphabetic Principle Instruction
5 Big Ideas of Reading

                        What is Fluency ?



A child who performs a task fluently, that is, both ac...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

         Teaching Strategies and Examples of Fluency:

Letter-Sound Fluency
Example: Given a set o...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

Critical Features of Fluency Instruction:
5 Big Ideas of Reading

                      What is Vocabulary?




Dynamic Measurement Group
What is Oral Language?



              Knowledge and use of words in spoken
              language
                 Sound...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

               Why Vocabulary and Oral Language?




Dynamic Measurement Group
5 Big Ideas of Reading
        Why should Vocabulary and Oral
        Language be taught?


         Vocabulary is not a d...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

 Three Goals for Vocabulary Instruction


1) Provide students with skills/opportunities to
learn w...
5 Big Ideas of Reading

Critical Features of Vocabulary Instruction
5 Big Ideas of Reading
                 What is Comprehension?

      Comprehension is about getting meaning




Dynamic M...
5 Big Ideas of Reading
                   Why Comprehension?




Dynamic Measurement Group
5 Big Ideas of Reading
                      Comprehension Skills




Dynamic Measurement Group
5 Big Ideas of Reading

Seven Evidence-Based Strategies for Improving Comprehension

               Comprehension monitori...
5 Big Ideas of Reading
Critical Features of Comprehension Instruction




Comprehension strategies for proficient readers
5 Big Ideas of Reading
          Teaching Strategies and Examples for Comprehension

                   Before Reading
   ...
Each DIBLES indicator represents a broader sequence of skills and
concepts to be taught (truth about dibels 1)
What is the purpose of DIBELS?



Outcome--Assessments that provide a bottom-line evaluation of the effectiveness of the
re...
DIBELS are criterion-referenced because each measure has an
empirically established goal (or benchmark) that changes acros...
"Benchmark is where we want our lowest
   performing readers to be. It's the minimum of
   where we want our kids to be." ...
Dibels related to the Big Ideas:
The fact that teachers need better training to carry out
deliberate instruction in reading, spelling, and writing should
p...
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
Reading Is Rocket Science Final
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Reading Is Rocket Science Final

  1. 1. READING IS ROCKET SCIENCE Cynthia R. Smith, M.A., CCC-SLP Katherine D. Smith, B.A.
  2. 2. BEGINNER'S MIND
  3. 3. !
  4. 4. Reading Is Rocket Science In medicine, if research found new ways to save lives, health care professionals would adopt these methods as quickly as possible, and would change practices, procedures, and systems. Educational research has found new ways to save young minds by helping them to become proficient readers; it is up to us to promote these new methods throughout the education system. Young lives depend on it. (P.5)
  5. 5. ! !
  6. 6. Reading Is Rocket Science Scientists now estimate that fully 95 percent of all children can be taught to read...Yet, in spite of all our knowledge, statistics reveal an alarming prevalence of struggling and poor readers...[the] risk of reading difficulties could still be prevented and ameliorated by literacy instruction that includes a range of research-based components and practices. But, as the statistics testify, this type of instruction clearly has not made its way into every classroom (P.7)
  7. 7. Reading Is Rocket Science Perhaps the dubious quality of past educational research has justified the prevalent cynicism among educators, who are often told that research exists to support any point of view. However, reading is actually one of the most studied aspects of human behavior, and a large body of work based on sound principles of objective inquiry exists that could be informing the field. (p.26)
  8. 8. Reading Is Rocket Science The tragedy here is that most reading failure is unnecessary. We now know that classroom teaching itself, when it includes a range of research-based components and practices, can prevent and ameliorate reading difficulty... while parents, tutors, and the community can contribute to reading success, classroom instruction must be viewed as the critical factor in preventing reading problems and must be the primary focus for change. (p. 9-10)
  9. 9. Tragic because not only reading is adversely impacted
  10. 10. Reading Is Rocket Science In the words of Keith Stanovich (Adams, 1990, pp. 59-60): Slow reading acquisition has cognitive, behavioral, and motivational consequences that slow the development of other cognitive skills and inhibit performance on many academic tasks. In short, as reading develops, other cognitive processes linked to it track the level of reading skill. Knowledge bases that are in reciprocal relationships with reading are also inhibited from further development. The longer this developmental sequence is allowed to continue, the more generalized the deficits will become, seeping into more and more areas of cognition and behavior. Or to put it more simply -- and sadly -- in the words of a tearful nine-year-old, already falling frustratingly behind his peers in reading progress, "Reading affects everything you do"
  11. 11. Children who can crack the code, read more words, learn more vocabulary, comprehend more, are motivated to read, and enjoy reading Children without adequate word recognition skills read less, read slowly, have slower development of vocabulary, and are less motivated to read
  12. 12. Reading Is Rocket Science Research should guide the profession Teachers must be educated to identify, read, respect, and apply the findings of scientific research to their practice. (p.25) If research guides their profession teachers will be in a better position to countermand the proliferation of appealing but unsupported ideas that have been harmful influences for more than a decade. (p.25)
  13. 13. Reading Is Rocket Science Examples of popular misconceptions include: Reading instruction is only needed until third grade Competent teachers do not use published reading programs Avoiding published reading programs empowers teachers and enhances the professional status of teaching Teaching phonics, word attack, and spelling skills directly to children is harmful Those who favor good code instruction are opposed to literature and comprehension instruction Reading a lot is the best way to overcome a reading problem Children should be taught to guess words on the basis of meaning and syntax Skills must always be taught in the context of literature
  14. 14. Reading Is Rocket Science Outcomes of Retention The idea of giving a child another year to "catch-up" and develop needed skills sounds like a positive alternative. However, research shows that outcomes for kids who are retained generally are not positive. In its 2003 "Position Statement on Student Grade Retention," the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) reports: Academic achievement of kids who are retained is poorer than that of peers who are promoted. Achievement gains associated with retention fade within two to three years after the grade repeated. Kids who are identified as most behind are the ones "most likely harmed by retention." Retention often is associated with increased behavior problems.
  15. 15. Reading Is Rocket Science Outcomes of Retention (con.) Grade retention has a negative impact on all areas of a child's achievement (reading, math, and language) and socio-emotional adjustment (peer relationships, self-esteem, problem behaviors and attendance). Students who are retained are more likely to drop out of school compared to students who were never retained. In fact, grade retention is one of the most powerful predictors of high school dropout. Retained students are more likely to have poorer educational and employment outcomes during late adolescence and early adulthood. Retention is more likely to have benign or positive impact when students are not simply held back, but receive specific remediation to address skill and/or behavioral problems and promote achievement and social skills.
  16. 16. Reading Is Rocket Science Teaching reading is a job for an expert...[because] learning to read is a complex linguistic achievement. For many children, it requires effort and incremental skill development...For best results, the teacher must instruct most students directly, systematically, and explicitly to decipher words in print (p.11)
  17. 17. Reading Is Rocket Science Some children learn language concepts and their application very easily in spite of incidental teaching, but others never learn unless they are taught in an organized, systematic, efficient way by a knowledgeable teacher using a well-designed instructional approach. Children of average ability might learn enough about reading to get by, but may not develop the appreciation for language structure that supports learning words from context, organization of the mental dictionary, comparing words, or precise use of language (p.12)
  18. 18. Reading Is Rocket Science ...to understand printed language well enough to teach it explicitly requires disciplined study of its systems and forms, both spoken and written. (p.12)
  19. 19. Reading Is Rocket Science Expert teaching of reading requires knowledge of language structure at all levels. Without such knowledge, teachers are not able to respond insightfully to student errors, choose examples for concepts, explain and contrast words and their parts, or judge what focus is needed in a lesson. (p.20)
  20. 20. Reading Is Rocket Science
  21. 21. Reading Is Rocket Science Reading vs. Literacy Reading = “getting meaning from print” VS. Literacy = “a variety of outcomes-- dispositions toward learning, interests in reading and writing, and knowledge of subject-matter domains--that go beyond reading” Rayner, et al, “How Psychological Science Informs the Teaching of Reading”
  22. 22. Reading Is Rocket Science Literacy ...dimensions of literacy entail the achievement of a broad range of skills embedded in cultural and technological contexts. An extended functional definition is useful in helping to make clear the wide range of literacy tasks a society must present to its members (e.g., computer literacy, historical literacy, scientific literacy, etc.). Rayner, et al, “How Psychological Science Informs the Teaching of Reading”
  23. 23. Reading Is Rocket Science The starting point for literacy is reading skill. Rayner, et al, “How Psychological Science Informs the Teaching of Reading”
  24. 24. Reading Is Rocket Science Learning to read builds on cognitive, linguistic, and social skills that have developed from the earliest age. The most important among these is the child’s competence in language, which provides the basic foundation for reading. Rayner, et al, “How Psychological Science Informs the Teaching of Reading”
  25. 25. Reading Is Rocket Science Children are routinely subjected to teaching practices that have not been tested or proven effective...Experts agree that children who initially are at risk for failure are saved, in most cases, by instruction that teaches directly the specific language skills on which proficient reading depends. (p.21)
  26. 26. Reading Is Rocket Science Effective teachers of reading raise awareness and proficiency with every level of language organization including sounds, syllables, meaningful parts (morphemes), phrases, sentences, paragraphs, and various genres of text. (p.21)
  27. 27. Reading Is Rocket Science Only recently has basic research allowed the community of reading scientists and educators to agree on what needs to be done (p.12)
  28. 28. 5 Big Ideas of Reading What did the National Reading Panel do? Specifically, congress asked the panel to: • Review all the research available (more than 100,000 reading studies) on how children learn to read. • Determine the most effective evidence-based methods for teaching children to read • Describe which methods of reading instruction are ready for use in the classroom and recommend ways of getting this information into schools. • Suggest a plan for additional research in reading development and instruction.
  29. 29. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Big Ideas in Beginning Reading (BIBR) focuses on the five BIG IDEAS of early literacy: Phonemic Awareness: The ability to hear and manipulate sounds in words. Alphabetic Principle: The ability to associate sounds with letters and use these sounds to form words. Fluency with Text: The effortless, automatic ability to read words in connected text. Vocabulary: The ability to understand (receptive) and use (expressive) words to acquire and convey meaning. Comprehension: The complex cognitive process involving the intentional interaction between reader and text to convey meaning.
  30. 30. 5 Big Ideas of Reading What makes a Big Idea a Big Idea?
  31. 31. 5 Big Ideas of Reading What is Phonemic Awareness? An understanding that a single-syllable word such as "cat" can be subdivided into beginning, middle, and ending sounds (segmentation) An understanding that individual segments of sound at the phonemic level can be combined to form words (blending or synthesis) Knowledge or awareness of the distinctive features of individual phonemes University of Indiana
  32. 32. 5 Big Ideas of Reading
  33. 33. Phonological Awareness Continuum Deletion Addition Phonemic Awareness Substitution Blending Segmentation Isolation Identity Categorization Phonemes Onset-Rime & Rhyming Syllable I’ve Dibel’d…Page 132
  34. 34. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Examples of Phonemic Awareness Skills: Blending: What word am I trying to say? Mmmm...ooooo...p. Segmentation (first sound isolation): What is the first sound in mop? Segmentation (last sound isolation): What is the last sound in mop? Segmentation (complete): What are all the sounds you hear in mop?
  35. 35. Critical Features of Phonemic Awareness Instruction
  36. 36. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Research indicates that, without direct instructional support, phonemic awareness eludes roughly 25% of middle-class first graders and substantially more of those who come from less literacy-rich backgrounds (p.1) Measures of schoolchildren’s ability to attend to and manipulate phonemes strongly correlate with their reading success through the twelfth grade (p.2) Lack of PA means poor spelling and comprehension Adams, et al, Phonemic Awareness in Young Children
  37. 37. 5 Big Ideas of Reading What is Alphabetic Principle? The alphabetic principle is composed of two parts: Part 1: Alphabetic Understanding: Words are composed of letters that represent sounds Part 2: Phonological Recoding (blending): Letter sounds can be blended together and knowledge of letter-sound associations can be used to read/decode words. Dynamic Measurement Group
  38. 38. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Why Alphabetic Principle? Letter-sound knowledge is prerequisite to word identification A primary difference between good and poor readers is the ability to use word-sound correspondences to decode words Letter-sound knowledge can be taught Teaching the alphabetic principle leads to gains in reading acquisition/achievement Dynamic Measurement Group
  39. 39. Alphabetic Principle skills Examples of alphabetic principle skills: Letter-sound associations: What is the sound of this letter? Soundblending: Blend the sounds of these letters to make a word “m-a-n” Segmenting: What sounds do you hear in this word? Manipulating letter-sound correspondences in words: What word would you have if you changed the /n/ in /nap/ to /l/? Reading pseudowords: What is this word, mip? Word identification: What is this word, map?
  40. 40. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Critical Features of Alphabetic Principle Instruction
  41. 41. 5 Big Ideas of Reading What is Fluency ? A child who performs a task fluently, that is, both accurately and quickly, has learned the skill to mastery, is automatic in performing the underlying skills and is much more able to remember, maintain, and apply the skill than a child who has not achieved mastery. (p.2) Truth About Dibels
  42. 42. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Teaching Strategies and Examples of Fluency: Letter-Sound Fluency Example: Given a set of letters, the student can produce the associated sound within one second Irregular Word Fluency Example: Given a set of irregular words in a set or a passage, can identify words in one second or less Oral Reading Fluency Example: By the end of Grade 2, students should read 90-100 words per minute fluently
  43. 43. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Critical Features of Fluency Instruction:
  44. 44. 5 Big Ideas of Reading What is Vocabulary? Dynamic Measurement Group
  45. 45. What is Oral Language? Knowledge and use of words in spoken language Sounds in words (phonology) Meaning (semantics) Order of words and relationship of words in sentences (syntax) Knowledge of word parts (morphology) Purpose/function (pragmatics) Dynamic Measurement Group
  46. 46. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Why Vocabulary and Oral Language? Dynamic Measurement Group
  47. 47. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Why should Vocabulary and Oral Language be taught? Vocabulary is not a developmental skill or one that can ever be fully mastered. The expansion and elaboration of vocabulary extends across a lifetime (Kamil & Herbert, 2005) Dynamic Measurement Group
  48. 48. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Three Goals for Vocabulary Instruction 1) Provide students with skills/opportunities to learn words independently 2) Teach students the meaning of specific words 3) Nurture a love and appreciation of words and their use
  49. 49. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Critical Features of Vocabulary Instruction
  50. 50. 5 Big Ideas of Reading What is Comprehension? Comprehension is about getting meaning Dynamic Measurement Group
  51. 51. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Why Comprehension? Dynamic Measurement Group
  52. 52. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Comprehension Skills Dynamic Measurement Group
  53. 53. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Seven Evidence-Based Strategies for Improving Comprehension Comprehension monitoring Cooperative learning Multiple strategies Mental imagery/mnemonics Graphic organizers Summarization Semantic organizers including: story maps question answering question generation
  54. 54. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Critical Features of Comprehension Instruction Comprehension strategies for proficient readers
  55. 55. 5 Big Ideas of Reading Teaching Strategies and Examples for Comprehension Before Reading 1) Set comprehension objectives 2) Pre-teach difficult to read words 3) Preview text and prime background knowledge 4) Chunk text into manageable segments During Reading 1) Identify text structure elements After Reading 2) Answer literal, inferential, and 1) Strategic integration evaluative questions 2) Judicious review 3) Retell stories or main ideas of 3) Formal and informal assessment informational text
  56. 56. Each DIBLES indicator represents a broader sequence of skills and concepts to be taught (truth about dibels 1)
  57. 57. What is the purpose of DIBELS? Outcome--Assessments that provide a bottom-line evaluation of the effectiveness of the reading program Screening--Assessments that identify which children are at risk for reading difficulty and need additional intervention Progress Monitoring--Assessments that determine if students are making adequate progress or need more intervention to achieve grade level reading outcomes (I’ve DIBEL Now What?, pp.32-33) ’d, NOT Diagnosis--Assessments that help teachers plan instruction by providing in-depth information about students’ skills and instructional needs. Some instruments may also help determine the presence of a developmental disorder that requires specialized treatments and interventions
  58. 58. DIBELS are criterion-referenced because each measure has an empirically established goal (or benchmark) that changes across time to ensure students' skills are developing in a manner predictive of continued progress. The goals/benchmarks were developed following a large group of students in a longitudinal manner to see where students who were "readers" in later grades were performing on these critical early literacy skills when they were in Kindergarten and First grade so that we can make predictions about which students are progressing adequately and which students may need additional instructional support. This approach is in contrast with normative measures which simply demonstrate where a student is performing in relation to the normative sample, regardless of whether that performance is predictive of future success. (uoregon FAQ)
  59. 59. "Benchmark is where we want our lowest performing readers to be. It's the minimum of where we want our kids to be." (module 1) The DIBELS benchmark goals are the minimal level students need to achieve to be confident they are on track for literacy outcomes. The ultimate goal is for 100% of children within a school to achieve each benchmark (myths and facts 10) "Benchmark is the bottom of 'okay'." (module 1)
  60. 60. Dibels related to the Big Ideas:
  61. 61. The fact that teachers need better training to carry out deliberate instruction in reading, spelling, and writing should prompt action rather than criticism. It should highlight the existing gap between what teachers need and what they have been give. (p.8)

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