The Importance of Reading Intervention

Students enrolled in Reading intervention receive supplemental instruction that complements classroom reading instruction. They are selected based on teacher recommendation, class performance and assessment data including standardized and district local assessments.

Students with severe reading problems may not have been exposed to consistent positive reinforcement for their efforts toward achieving academic goals. This void can lead to lack of motivation and self-efficacy, which further impacts their ability to become literate.


Phonics is the basis for decoding, and it’s a critical component in helping readers become proficient. It should be taught explicitly in a manner that’s relevant to the students’ learning levels and the specific decoding skills they need. Research has found that systematic phonics instruction improves reading proficiency.

Systematic phonics instruction should include teaching letter shapes and names, phonemic awareness, and all major letter-sound relationships, including short and long vowel patterns. These lessons are best taught in a sequential fashion, starting with short vowel patterns and moving to longer ones as children progress.

However, phonics should not be the only focus of students’ literacy learning. It’s important to also focus on developing comprehension, vocabulary, and background knowledge.

Reading Comprehension

Reading comprehension is a higher-order reading skill that allows students to make sense of what they read. Comprehension combines many important cognitive processes like attention, memory, inference and critical thinking to help readers make sense of text. Children who comprehend can visualize a story, predict what will happen in the next chapter, laugh at jokes and connect what they have read to their own experiences.

Vocabulary and language skills are essential to reading comprehension, as is the ability to understand grammatical rules and structures. Incorporating grammar instruction into daily scripted lessons, deconstructing mentor texts and using reading-alouds to model how words work together can improve student understanding of the structure of written text.

Juan has struggled with reading for years and has a history of dyslexia and ADHD. He has taken a universal screener and received a diagnostic assessment to determine where he is struggling. Teachers will intervene and reteach skills that are needed starting with the most basic phonics and fluency skills.


Students need to acquire and retain a large vocabulary in order to read. Students who have a larger vocabulary know more words and understand more. This knowledge is important for reading comprehension because it allows students to make connections and infer meaning from a text. A large gap in vocabulary knowledge between high and low achieving students has been identified as one of the main reasons for the achievement gap seen in reading studies.

To promote vocabulary development, teachers need to explicitly teach the meanings of words as well as strategies to learn them independently. This can be done through word study, using graphic organizers during explicit instruction and providing multiple opportunities to practice new vocabulary words in contexts.

It is also important to organize instruction around themes rather than skills, and to provide students with multiple texts that explore the same topic. This helps build background knowledge, which supports the learning of disciplinary vocabulary associated with subject-area content.


Having strong fluency skills allows students to read at an appropriate rate while maintaining accuracy and expression. Expression refers to the student’s ability to read orally with components like tone, pitch, volume, emphasis, and rhythm. It also includes pauses that support the meaning of the text and expression that shows comprehension.

Research has shown that reading fluency correlates strongly with reading comprehension. Students who do not develop a high level of fluency may fall further behind their peers, leading to what is known as the Matthew effect (named after the Biblical verse).

To build fluency, teachers can use several instructional strategies such as choral reading, cloze reading, and reader’s theater. Another way to build fluency is to have a stronger reader pair with a weaker reader to provide a model of good reading and to help decode any miscues. This procedure is often called “partner reading” or “assistance with reading.” (Hasbrouck, 2006). Other effective strategies for developing reading fluency include:

The Importance of Reading Intervention
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