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Technology advances have brought an influx of supporting tools that give teachers data point after data point and provide intervention after intervention. While technology tools can give teachers great insight into how students learn and where they struggle during the reading process, this is only part of the picture. The true understanding of teaching reading to students still lies with the teacher.
For educators, the most important task and often the most challenging, is to ensure every student succeeds to the very best of her/his ability. Understanding that, educators recognize the importance of offering quality instruction, best practices, and instructional materials that have been shown to achieve the outcomes required for that student population. It is incumbent upon decision makers to select from among those instructional materials that already offer evidence of those outcomes.
English language learners often enter U.S. schools with a literacy disadvantage. While they may be proficient in their native language, many struggle to attain the English literacy and language skills needed to succeed academically and engage in social interactions with their peers.
Imagine how scary class, peers, and the world can be for a child who can’t read and the many instances where reading is necessary and obvious.
Only one-third of American students entering high school are proficient in reading (National Assessment of Educational Progress). Many students lack the basic, foundational reading skills necessary to be successful academically.
Dyslexia is the most common type of developmental reading disability and one of the most studied of all learning disorders. Advocates have successfully pushed more than 40 states to adopt rules and guidelines for the identification and treatment of dyslexia. Given prevalence estimates of about 5 percent to 17 percent of all students, one or two who merit this descriptor are likely to be in every classroom. Thus, every teacher should be familiar with the nature of the disorder and how to teach children who are affected by it.
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