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Essentials of Planning, Selecting, and Tailoring Interventions for Unique Learners by Jennifer T. Mascolo, Vincent C. Alfonso, Dawn P. Flanagan

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FourTailoring Interventions in Reading Based on Emerging Research on the Development of Word Recognition Skills

David Kilpatrick

Imagine taking your poorly running car to a mechanic. Your mechanic says he doesn't understand why the car has this problem, yet suggests different ways that the problem can be minimized or improved upon. However, because the mechanic cannot identify the cause of the problem, there is little hope of fixing it.

When it comes to word-level reading difficulties, those of us who conduct educational evaluations have often been functioning like that mechanic. That is, we tend to design interventions without knowing the nature or source of the reading difficulties. Two emerging sets of research, however, have demonstrated very clearly how we can understand the nature and sources of reading difficulties especially for students who have sufficient learning opportunities and exhibit good effort. First, research has demonstrated that most reading difficulties can be prevented or corrected (e.g., Torgesen et al., 2001; Vellutino et al., 1996). Second, the mystery surrounding the cause and nature of word-level reading difficulties has essentially been solved (e.g., Ehri, 1998, 2005; Ziegler & Goswami, 2005)

Preventing and Correcting Most Reading Difficulties

Research over the last two decades has demonstrated that most reading difficulties can be corrected, or better yet, prevented in the first place. It is most unfortunate that the educational community appears ...

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