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ERIC Number: ED498777
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007
Pages: 11
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 4
Differentiated Reading Instruction: Small Group Alternative Lesson Structures for All Students. Guidance Document for Florida "Reading First" Schools
Kosanovich, Marcia; Ladinsky, Karen; Nelson, Luanne; Torgesen, Joseph
Florida Center for Reading Research
This document was prepared to provide guidance to "Reading First" coaches and teachers regarding alternative lesson structures for providing small group, differentiated instruction to students in grades K-3 within "Reading First" schools in Florida. The motivation for the development of this document stemmed from specific weaknesses in student reading outcomes and observations of classroom practices during the first two years of implementation of Florida's "Reading First" program (2003-2004 and 2004-2005). Of special concern is the fact that more than half of the first grade students in Reading First schools are not able to meet the February benchmarks for phonemic decoding skills (as assessed by the Nonsense Word Fluency Measure from the Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS[R]), and almost half still cannot meet these February benchmarks at the beginning of second grade. Furthermore, students in "Reading First" schools show an overall relative decline in oral reading fluency (ORF) during the first and second grade, so that too few (46%) meet grade level expectations in ORF at the beginning of third grade (compared to 72% and 56% at the beginning of 1st and 2nd grade, respectively). Overall, the data suggest that students in "Reading First" schools are consistently "losing ground" relative to grade level expectations in word-level reading skills (accuracy and fluency) between the beginning of first grade and the beginning of third grade. In contrast, the percentage of students that meet grade level expectations in oral language vocabulary actually increases from the end of kindergarten (39%) to the end of third grade (47%). In response not only to these student data but also to observations of methods (i.e., lesson structures) used during small group, teacher-led instruction, it is recommended that Reading Coaches and Teachers participate in training and have access to continued support in the use of alternative lesson structures to provide small group, differentiated instruction and targeted interventions to struggling readers. [This document was produced by the Florida Center for Reading Research and Just Read, Florida!]
Florida Center for Reading Research. Florida State University, City Centre Building, 227 North Bronough Street Suite 7250, Tallahassee, FL 32301. Tel: 850-644-9352; Fax: 850-644-9085; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher
Education Level: Grade 1; Grade 2; Grade 3; Kindergarten; Primary Education
Audience: Support Staff; Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Florida