Charlestown Primary School
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Reading Recovery is a program which seeks to assist children who have reading difficulties. It is primarily used with children at the grade one level or ages 5 to 7. The students are selected by an assessment test which targets the lowest achievers in the grade one classroom. After this assessment is done, the bottom five students (the lowest of the lowest) are recommended for the recovery program.

At this stage, individual lessons are planned for each student based on their reading levels. Each child normally starts at either level one or level two depending on his/her reading ability. These lessons follow a set routine where each student is taught for 30 minutes. The activities involve reading different level texts while a running record is taken. For example, ‘The Little Snowman,’ is a level three text with 59 words. If the child is able to read 50 words, then he or she has made 9 errors out of 59 words. A percentage is then calculated and this will determine whether or not the child is ready to move on to a higher level text.
All of the books the children read have a wide selection of the sight words which are repeated in each new text that the child reads. Therefore, the child becomes more fluent and confident in his/her reading.

The child is also required to write a short story usually one sentence based on his/her own experiences, for example, what he or she had for breakfast or something his or her pet did. At times a student may get very excited and challenges him or herself by writing two or three sentences. This illustrates that the child is learning and it shows by the opportunities that he or she is given to write words correctly without much assistance.

From time to time the child is given homework whether, a book to read or a cut up story to put together. Parents you are asked to assist your child by encouraging him or her and observing as he or she demonstrates his or her newly developed skills in reading.

The children I work with are very interested in the program and they look forward to each new lesson. They read about animals, play time, fishing and a whole lot more thus, their vocabulary is enhanced in every aspect.

At the end of the school year each child is given a final assessment to determine whether he or she can cope in a regular classroom.

Reading Recovery is an excellent means of tapping into students’ reading challenges and finding an appropriate measure to remedy reading difficulties our children face early in literacy.

Latoya Bailey
Reading Recovery Teacher

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