Dyslexia and The Writing Road to Reading
Dyslexia is a learning disability that makes it difficult to read, write, and spell.
Research has determined that dyslexia and other reading difficulties stem from a core deficit in phonological awareness, a skill that is needed to associate spoken words with written language.
H. Lee Swanson, Ph.D., Professor of Educational Psychology at the University of California at Riverside, analyzed the results of 92 scientifically-based research studies to identify the specific teaching methods and instructional components that proved most effective for increasing word recognition and reading comprehension skills.
Sound instructional practices include:
- statements of instructional objectives, matching the difficulty level to the task and to the student
- explicit, systematic instruction
- guided practice, independent practice, daily reviews, and evaluations to ensure students master the material.
The Writing Road to Reading incorporates all the recommended interventions and is a diagnostic method. Instruction is constantly monitored and tailored to the needs of students. Differentiated instruction is thus embedded in The Spalding Method.
"The most important outcome of teaching word recognition," Dr. Swanson emphasized, "is that students learn to recognize real words, not simply sound out 'nonsense' words using phonics skills."
The Writing Road to Reading uses high frequency words that are already part of most students' spoken vocabularies. Students begin by learning to decode the words they will encounter most often in text, an advantage for students with learning disabilities and all students.