The Science of Reading or Reading Instruction That Works

Here are some key points:

Reading is not a natural process: Unlike spoken language, which humans acquire naturally, reading must be explicitly taught.
Reading is the product of decoding and comprehension.
 Reading involves multiple skills: phonemic awareness (awareness of individual sounds in words), phonics (the relationship between sounds and letters), fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. 


Emergent Literacy: Before formal reading instruction begins, children develop foundational skills known as emergent literacy. This stage includes developing phonological awareness (awareness of sounds in spoken language), print awareness (understanding the forms and functions of written language), and oral language skills. 

Phonics: Phonics is the method of teaching reading that focuses on the relationship between sounds and letters. It involves understanding the phonetic code (how individual sounds or phonemes correspond to written letters or letter combinations) and using this knowledge to decode words. 

Fluency: As children progress in reading, they develop fluency, which involves reading with speed, accuracy, and appropriate expression. Vocabulary and

Comprehension: Building and comprehension skills are crucial for understanding and deriving meaning from written text.

Multi-sensory approach: This instructional method engages multiple senses, including visual, auditory, and tactile/kinesthetic, to reinforce learning. It combines seeing, hearing, and manipulating letters and sounds to enhance understanding and retention.

Structured approach: A structured phonics program follows a systematic sequence, introducing letters and their corresponding sounds in a logical order. It provides explicit instruction, guiding students through the process of decoding words and building reading skills step by step.

Research evidence: Extensive research supports the effectiveness of explicit, systematic phonics instruction. Studies have shown that explicit instruction helps struggling readers, children with dyslexia, and typically developing readers. 

Closing the achievement gap: Explicit instruction in reading helps to close the achievement gap, ensuring that all students, including those from diverse backgrounds, have equitable access to effective reading instruction. 

Skill transfer: Explicit instruction provides students with the tools and strategies they need to apply their reading skills to different texts and contexts.