"How can the study of words, their sounds and their parts improve achievement for low readers?"
This focus has come as a result of my inquiry last year into how to lift student vocabulary in reading? During the year I had a specific focus on vocabulary strategies but when I reflected on my end of year reading data I concluded that this focus was of benefit for my higher students but not at all for my lower students. Now this year with the average reading age of my students is even lower, range of 6.9 - 8.5yrs, I want to specifically focus on increasing achievement in reading for Yr 4 & 5 students who are well below standard. In order to do this I want to begin by increasing the actual study of words, their sounds and parts. Even though these students are 4-5 years into school they don't have the content or strategy knowledge to decode texts at their level. In order to complete this inquiry effectively I have chosen a focus group, the Drones, which consists of 7-7.5yr readers.
After analysing last year's data and testing each student within my group this year I establish three summary points.
- All of my students within the group have low decoding skills.
- When decoding students often sound out initial sound then simply guess the rest of the word
- At times students just say the first word that comes to mind which has the same first letter.
From this point forward I have established two areas of focus
- Tasks: Word study task (Learning to read) & Comprehension (Reading to learn).
- Reading: The focus and attention within my group reading sessions.