Recent Research on Reading

What happens to reading achievement when teachers substitute independent reading for class instruction

What happens to reading achievement when teachers substitute independent reading for class instruction

What happens to middle-schoolers’ reading achievement when 3 hours of classroom reading instruction each week is replaced with time for independent reading of the student’s choice and differentiated reading instruction? A new study of 2,150 6th-8th-grade students at 4 schools finds that oral reading fluency improved compared with controls in 2 of the schools, and that reading… Tell Me More »


Words are bigger stumbling block than sentence structure when reading academic language

What poses greater challenges to students in reading comprehension, long sentences or long and complex words? According to a large new German study on academic language published in Reading Research Quarterly, long and complex words seem to be a greater stumbling block for students from families of low socioeconomic status (SES) who have a less extensive… Tell Me More »


Four interventions that help students with learning disabilities improve their writing

Good writing requires juggling a lot of skills. Students must concurrently generate ideas, plan and organize material, be creative as well as analytical, follow the rules of grammar and spell words correctly. Students with learning disabilities (LD) often struggle with these competing demands and may develop negative attitudes about writing as a result of their… Tell Me More »

Young students more accurate in retellings of narrative text than informational text

Young students more accurate in retellings of narrative text than informational text

Elementary school children’s retellings of narrative texts were more accurate and lengthier than retellings of objective texts, finds a study of 87 proficient 4th-grade readers in the U.S.  The reading comprehension study found that narrative retellings had significantly more matching meanings at the clause level (16.91%) than expository retellings (3.85%), says a new study in… Tell Me More »


12 strategies for self-assessment in writing

Good writing can be said to be essentially about self-assessment. An author’s work is the end result of many rounds of revisions based on self-assessment of earlier drafts.    A review of the literature on self-assessment in writing recently published in the Journal of Research in Reading yields 12 strategies for the use of self-assessment with learners… Tell Me More »


Scaffolded summer reading program of little benefit to some low-income students

Over the summer months, low-income elementary students lose ground in reading compared to their higher-income classmates. But a new study in Reading Research Quarterly  finds that summer reading programs to combat summer reading loss may not benefit all low-income youth.  Researchers say the programs should target students based on the poverty-level of the school they attend rather… Tell Me More »


5 reading comprehension teaching strategies that work with K-3 students

The early grades are a time when young children can and should be building reading comprehension skills. Most research focuses on reading comprehension skills for older children. A recent study in Preventing School Failure identifies strategies that work for grades K-3 based on 25 peer-reviewed studies that focused on building reading comprehension in this age group. Below are… Tell Me More »


Many best practices for writing instruction left out by Common Core

Writing teachers are among the most resistant to incorporating research-based practices in instruction, preferring to rely on the advice of professional authors and successful teachers of writing instead, according to a new study in School Psychology Review. The adoption of the Common Core State Standards puts pressure on educators across the curriculum to pay attention… Tell Me More »