Teaching Your Child to Read
The Symbol Accentuation (SA) Reading Program was developed in an effort to teach very limited, developmentally delayed children (with IQs in the 30 to 45 range) how to read. The advantage of working with such a population is that one can quickly discover the obstacles to finding meaning in printed words. However, before discussing these obstacles, we will describe two
It is interesting to note, in passing, some research findings on pursuit eye movements. These are the following eye movements that occur in pursuit of a slowly moving target, for example, watching an aeroplane moving in the distance. If the target moves too quickly, then the smooth pursuit eye movements break down into jerky saccadic eye movements. Some researchers have noted that people with dyslexic difficulties often exhibit saccadation of their pursuit eye movements for target speeds where this does not usually occur. This observation has received relatively little interest because pursuit eye movements are not used during normal reading tasks. Some authorities have described pursuit eye movements as an extreme case of a fixation reflex (the reflex that occurs to keep the image of the object of regard on the fovea) and fixation instability has been described in a group of children with poor reading performance (Eden, Stein, Wood, & Wood, 1994). More research is needed to determine...
These two studies examined the relations among theory of mind, metacognitive language, reading skills, and higher order story comprehension in L1 and L2 learners. Study 1 examined these relations among Grade 4 children who spoke either English or Portuguese as a first language. Study 2 examined these relations among Kindergarten - Grade 2 children who spoke either English, Cantonese, Tagalog or Ukrainian as a first language. There was a clear pattern that emerged from both studies. General vocabulary development contributed most to reading comprehension and fables understanding for L1 children and high-achieving
We identify twins in the third to twelfth grades with reading problems based on their school records. Then we invite them to the laboratory for further testing in specific reading skills, IQ, attention, memory, and language. We also test twins with no school history for reading problems to provide a normal-range group
DF analyses have also been conducted for group deficits in phoneme awareness, phonological decoding, and orthographic coding (Gayan & Olson, 2001 Olson, Forsberg, & Wise, 1994 Olson, Wise, Conners, Rack, & Fulker, 1989). Phoneme awareness is measured by language tasks that require the isolation and manipulation of phonemes within spoken words or nonwords. Performance in these tasks is highly correlated with reading skill, particularly with the component reading skill of phonological decoding. We measure phonological decoding through both the oral and silent reading of nonwords. Our orthographic coding measures assess subjects' sensitivity to the precise spelling patterns for words in the comparison of a word with a homophonic nonword (e.g., rain rane) and in the choice between homophones (bear bare) to fit the meaning of a spoken sentence. All of these tasks are significantly correlated with each other and with measures of printed word recognition.
For the 2000-5 funding period, two new components have been added to the Center. Beginning in 2001, a new component directed by Janice Keenan at the University of Denver is focusing on deficits in reading and language comprehension. Keenan is studying the same school-age twins who were tested in Boulder on word-level reading and language skills. Preliminary results from a small twin sample suggest that the heritability for individual differences in listening comprehension may be substantial. The correlation for 30 pairs of identical twins was 0.69, while that for 21 pairs of fraternal twins was 0.01, and these correlations were significantly different by Fisher's z (Keenan, Betjemann, & Fazendeiro, 2002). (We expect that the correlation for fraternal twins will be higher as the sample grows, since they share half their segregating genes on average, as well as their shared family environment.) With a larger sample of twins, we will be able to see how genetic influences on individual...
But an appropriate remedial reading program can help learners make great strides. With age, and appropriate help from parents and clinicians, children with ADHD become better able to suppress their hyperactivity and to channel it into more socially acceptable behaviors.
Padden and Ramsey (1998) suggest that finger spelling may interact with ASL skills in providing deaf children with better access to English literacy learning. They find that deaf teachers using ASL in the classroom actually finger-spell more words than hearing teachers. Most important, these deaf teachers effectively chain together the different expressive modes of communication, switching from finger spelling to printed text to finger spelling, or from ASL sign to finger spelling to text, in order to facilitate the connection between text and meaning and to develop better print decoding skills. In Padden and Ramsey's study, the deaf students with better ASL and finger-spelling skills developed better English-reading skills.
Tic domain contributes to poor reading, and poor reading exacerbates lags in semantic development. Children who have poor reading skills read fewer words over the course of a year and are less able to learn the words they do read than those who have good reading skills (Nagy and Anderson, 1984).
Each child needs practice to be a fluent reader. Research at the National Institute of Health has found that phonics instruction should be taught as part of a comprehensive, literature-based reading program. Many opportunities for children to read at their own reading level help them to learn to read for meaning and enjoy reading. Highly trained teachers can help children develop good, overall literacy skills, with good vocabularies, knowledge of correct syntax and spelling, reasoning and questioning skills.
While phonological skills are possibly the most stable and best long-term determiners of literacy skill outcome, they do not always emerge as the most powerful predictor of reading skill at the beginning stages of literacy development. There is strong evidence that children's knowledge of letter names (and probably also sounds) is a very strong predictor of early reading skill, and that its interaction with emerging phonological skills is the major driving force behind reading progress in the first year at school. Early large-scale studies found prereaders' letter knowledge to be a very good predictor of first-grade reading skills (Bond & Dykstra, 1967 Chall, 1967).
The role of verbal short-term memory in early reading development is dealt with by Pickering (Chapter 6, this volume). However, a discussion of the importance of phonological skills in reading development would be incomplete without a consideration of its interaction with verbal memory processes. Indeed, the relative importance of verbal memory and phonology in learning to read is an issue that has been nearly as controversial as that of the contribution made by specific phonological processes to reading. It is well documented in the scientific literature that short-term verbal memory is closely related to level of reading skill, whether the materials are digits and letters (Katz, Healy, & Shankweiler, 1983), words (Brady, Shankweiler, & Mann, 1983) or sentences (Mann, Liberman, & Shankweiler, 1980). However, whether verbal memory span is an important predictor of reading skill independent of children's phonological abilities is not entirely clear. Hansen and Bowey (1994) found in...
Tunmer (1989) emphasized the importance of syntactic awareness as an independent contributor to early reading skill. In a longitudinal study, he administered Another way of viewing the interaction of semantic and phonological information in influencing reading skill is to draw on computer-simulated connection-ist models of reading. The earliest most influential word recognition model of this sort, proposed by Seidenberg and McClelland (1989) consists of only two types of representational units a set of input units coding the letters present in printed words (orthographic units) and a set of output units coding the pronunciation of words (phonological units). There is additionally a set of hidden units that connect the orthographic and phonological units. These connections, together with the hidden units, carry weights that govern the spread of activation across the units. It is these weights that encode the model's knowledge about written English. During the training procedure, a...
It is well documented that young children's level of language proficiency and their reading skill are closely correlated with socioeconomic status (SES) of the parents, with middle-class children attaining higher levels of language and literacy than their lower-class or deprived peers (Feagans & Farran, 1982 White, 1982). Of particular relevance to the present discussion is the research that addresses the relationship between SES, reading progress, and phonological sensitivity. Raz and Bryant (1990) and Bowey (1995) have suggested that SES differences in word level reading in young children are mediated partly through preexisting differences in phonological sensitivity. Raz and Bryant reported strong SES differences in reading performance even when IQ score effects were covaried. Furthermore, when phonological sensitivity scores were covaried, SES differences were no longer significant in the tests of reading accuracy. This suggests that SES differences in phonological sensitivity may...
The picture was thus of a selective semantic memory impairment with other memory systems intact. The pattern of semantic impairment but intact episodic skill is a new dissociation in developmental amnesia and forms a double dissociation to the cases of Gadian et al. (2000), where episodic skill is impaired but semantic knowledge is intact. C.L. was also dyslexic, with significant impairment in word recognition skills in comparison to controls. The pattern of reading was that of surface dyslexia, with normal reading of nonwords, impaired reading of irregular words and homophone confusion. This pattern of reading is typically interpreted as reflecting impairment of the lexico-semantic reading route, and in this case the impairment within this route would be localized to retrieval from the semantic system itself.
The reading disorder, surface dyslexia (e.g. Coltheart et al., 1983 Castles & Coltheart, 1993, 1996), is characterized by relatively good phonological reading skills and ability to read nonwords but poor development of the lexico-semantic reading route employed in the reading of irregular words and the reading of highly familiar established words. This difficulty could be characterized as a difficulty in developing the memory that enables word recognition. The surface dyslexic fails to recognize words that would be recognized with ease by his peers.
Many young children and those with severe multiple disabilities cannot use traditional spelling and reading skills to access their AAC systems. Very young children, who are preliterate, have not yet developed reading and writing skills, while older children with severe cognitive impairments may remain nonliterate. For individuals who are not literate, messages within their AAC systems must be represented by one or more symbols or codes. With children, early communication development focuses on vocabulary that is needed to communicate essential messages and to develop language skills. Careful analysis of environmental and communication needs is used to develop vocabulary for the child's AAC system. This vocabulary selection assessment includes examination of the ongoing process of vocabulary and message maintenance.
Impaired episodic memory was seen on immediate and delayed story recall, design recall and delayed free recall of word lists, although immediate free recall of words was within the normal range. Reading and spelling were also impaired and there was the suggestion of some retrograde loss, with teachers reporting normal reading prior to illness, yet reading and spelling ages 6 months after illness were found to be 9-14 months below chronological age at time of illness.
Where there is still much work to be done is in improving the reading skills ofbraillists who have mastered more than the basics ofthe code and who can be justifiably described as competent readers. Unfortunately, as will be discussed later, the reading speeds attainable by touch readers are massively inferior to those recorded for readers of print. One of the major educationally and vocationally handicapping effects of blindness is reduced speed of information processing. All too often, braillists are given little or no formal, structured teaching to become more proficient in picking up information by listening and reading. The assumption seems to be that improvements in these skills will come about as a result of ordinary development and of motivation within the learner. However, investigations reported by McBride (1974), Crandell and Wallace (1974), In the second school, Lorimer used 22 pupils, with a mean age of 12.1 years and a mean IQ of 97 in the experimental group, and a mean...
Generally speaking, with more difficult reading material or with less expert readers, the number of fixations is increased, the duration of fixations is increased, and the number of regressions increases. The reading eye movements of people with severe reading difficulties are, therefore, somewhat atypical. A key question is whether these atypical eye movements are the result of the poor reading skills or whether they are underlying causes of the poor reading. This question has been addressed in two main ways (Evans, 2001). First, many researchers have studied the sequential horizontal saccadic eye movements of dyslexic readers in nonread-ing tasks. The second approach has been to compare the reading eye movements of people with dyslexia with those of younger good readers.
Because children with EPI appear to be at risk for the development of normal reading and writing skills even after they no longer have intelligibility issues, it seems prudent to incorporate activities to enhance phonological awareness skills while they are receiving treatment for phonological production. Moreover, results from Gillon's (2000) study indicate that enhancing phonological awareness skills leads to improvement in phonological production. Thus, enhancing phonological awareness skills appears to serve a dual purpose for children with expressive phonological impairments.
A third predicament is the broad variation in instructional practices in inclusive classrooms. The fact that disruptions in language and communication development are implicated in a wide range of disabilities but not acknowledged as central to children's literacy learning (Catts et al., 1999) also has significant ramifications for research on academic outcomes of inclusion. For example, the effects of inclusion on emerging reading skill have been reported in a limited manner, primarily for children classified with learning (severe reading) disabilities (Klingner et al., 1998), less so for children with language impairment (Silliman et al., 2000). In general, the reading instruction for these children remained undifferentiated from the reading practices used with other students in the classroom, resulting in minimal gains. Thus, shifting a child to inclusion from a special education placement, or even maintaining a child in the regular education classroom, may mean that little has...
It is possible to measure phonological awareness, that is, the ability to identify, segment, and manipulate speech segments of words in a variety of ways. Adams (1990) divides phonological awareness tasks that successfully predict reading skills into four main types. First are syllable and phoneme segmentation tasks in which the child taps, counts out, or identifies the constituent syllables and or phonemes within words, for example, for the word cat, the child taps three times to indicate the three constituent phonemes within the word (Liberman, Shankweiler, Fischer, & Carter, 1974). Second are phoneme manipulation tasks which require the child to delete, add, substitute, or transpose phonemes within words, for example, in a consonant deletion task, cat without the c says at (Bruce, 1964). Third come sound blending tasks in which the examiner provides the phonemes of a word and the child is asked to put them together, for example, c-a-t blends to yield cat (Perfetti, Beck, Bell, &...
The reason why the temporal processing deficit hypothesis has excited so much interest is that, despite its critics, it appears to offer an account of how the well-established difficulties of dyslexics in the phonological domain arise in the first place (see also Goswami et al., 2002). At least some of these pre-date reading, and are held to be causally related to difficulty in acquiring adequate reading skills. The conjecture is that difficulties in processing the extremely short temporal durations involved in speech perception lead to impaired auditory discrimination or categorisation of phonemes of which the speech signal is composed. Thus, a temporal deficit becomes an impairment of phoneme perception which in turn leads to difficulties in learning the relations between components of the spoken and the written word. Such a view neatly explains why aspects of reading disability are heritable despite the fact that it is highly unlikely that we have genes specifically for reading. It...
Adams (1990), for example, reported that children with language impairments at age 4 who were no longer language impaired at age 5 had normal reading achievement at age 8. Catts et al. (2002) further found that children with language impairments in kindergarten who did not show language impairments in second grade had significantly better reading outcomes than those who continued to have language problems. Finally, the ''persistence hypothesis'' is also supported by evidence that change in language impairment status is related to severity of language difficulties, type of language impairment, and nonverbal IQ, each of which has been associated with reading outcome in children with language impairment (Bishop and Adams, 1990, Catts et al., 2002). Wagner, R. K., and Torgesen, J. K. (1987). The nature of phonological processing and its causal role in the acquisition of reading skills. Psychological Bulletin, 101, 1-21.
The first field application of the SA Reading Program was conducted at Wrentham State School in Massachusetts (Marko 1968) with a population of trainable developmentally delayed residents who had not previously been able to learn how to read. The program was applied over a period of 18 months with 70 developmentally delayed residents with a mean chronological age (CA) of 21 years, mean Stanford-Binet mental age (MA) of four years eight months, and mean IQof 38. These developmentally delayed residents learned to sight-read a mean of 28 words in a range of verb-noun and noun-verb sentences, in both large and small type size. Twenty of the seventy were able, with the help ofletter-sound accentuation (Phase 3 ofthe SA Program), to sound out and decode the meaning of words with different consonant- vowel-consonant combinations.
The use of a distance letter chart test for school screening would be very unlikely to detect any of the visual correlates of dyslexia described in this chapter. Some schools use screening instruments that include binocular vision tests, but these tests are generally coarse and create conditions very different from normal reading. This is in direct contrast with optometric binocular vision tests which have, in recent years, evolved so as more closely to resemble the normal situation when reading (Evans, 2002).
Therefore, the process of reading strengthens the child's ability to perceive sounds in both verbal and written language. Moreover, for practice to be most effective, children need to read stories that are at their reading level in other words, they should be able to recognize most of the words.
The elementary school played a minor role for them in learning how to read, write and count because they had a strong tradition of home education that continued through the generations (Figure 22.5). In the second and third generations, they attended school for certain periods of the year or every other day. Even today there are strong reading habits in the families. Most of the people I interviewed had learned to read and write before starting school. Often it turned out to be their deaf grandfather who had taught them.
Of the speech and language disorders, children who have an articulation or an expressive language disorder are the least likely to have long-term problems. Despite initial delays, most children do learn to speak. For people with dyslexia, the outlook is mixed. But an appropriate remedial reading program can help learners make great strides. With age, and appropriate help from parents and clinicians, children with ADHD become better able to suppress their hyperactivity and to channel it into more socially acceptable behaviors.
Of course growing up in the same family, schools, and community does not mean that the environments are the same for twins in a pair. Children help to create their own environments within and outside the family. DZ twins' different genes might lead them to greater differences in the way they interact with and select their environments, compared to MZ twins with identical genes. For example, one twin of a DZ pair might have normal genes related to reading development, while the other has genes that are related to dyslexia. The twin with genes related to dyslexia might have greater problems in learning to read, experience less pleasure in reading, and ultimately choose to read less than the twin who has normal or superior genes related to reading development. Thus, the hypothetical dyslexic twin's smaller amount of reading practice may contribute to their reading failure. However, less reading practice is not the only cause in most cases of dyslexia. Children with dyslexia typically...
One other very common binocular vision anomaly in children is convergence insufficiency. If a child observes an object that is approaching his her nose, then his her eyes will usually continue to turn inward (converge) until the object is less than about 5 cm away from the eyes. A convergence insufficiency is when a person is unable to converge closer than a certain distance, usually 8-10 cm. A marked convergence insufficiency is often associated with a decompensated heterophoria at a normal reading distance and may require treatment. Most convergence insufficiencies respond well to simple exercises.
Helping Your Child Learn To Read
When parents help their children learn to read, they help open the door to a new world. As a parent, you can begin an endless learning chain: You read to your children, they develop a love of stories and poems, they want to read on their own, they practice reading, and finally they read for their own information or pleasure. They become readers, and their world is forever expanded and enriched.