How was Reading Recovery developed?

Reading Recovery was developed by New Zealand educator and researcher, Dr. Marie M. Clay. Dr. Clay conducted observational research in the mid-1960’s that enabled her to design ways to detect a child’s early reading difficulties. In the mid-1970’s, she developed Reading Recovery procedures with teachers and tested the program in New Zealand. Since its success in New Zealand, Reading Recovery has spread to Australia, the United States, Canada, and Great Britain.

What is Reading Recovery?

Reading Recovery is a highly effective short-term early intervention for grade one students who, after kindergarten, are having difficulties with literacy activities. One-on-one lessons are taught daily by a specially trained teacher. The intervention is most effective when it is available to all students who need it and is used as a supplement to good classroom teaching.

What is the goal of Reading Recovery?

The goal of Reading Recovery is to dramatically reduce the number of grade one students who have difficulty learning to read and write and to reduce the cost of these learners to educational systems.

Who Is Reading Recovery for?

Reading Recovery serves the lowest achieving grade one students who are not catching on to the complex set of concepts that make reading and writing possible.

How Does Reading Recovery Work?

Individual students receive a half-hour lesson each school day for 12 to 20 weeks with a specially trained Reading Recovery teacher. As soon as students can meet grade-level expectations and demonstrate that they can continue to work independently in the classroom, their lessons are discontinued, and new students begin individual instruction.

What are the outcomes of Reading Recovery?

There are 2 positive outcomes for students:

Approximately 75% of students who complete the full 12 to 20 week intervention can meet grade-level expectations in reading and writing. Follow-up studies indicate that most Reading Recovery students also do well on standardized tests and maintain their gains in later years.

The few students who are still having difficulty after a complete intervention are recommended for further evaluation. Actions may include classroom or small group support, a longer term intervention, or referral to special education. This category represents a positive, supportive action on behalf of the child and the school. Diagnostic information from Reading Recovery is available to inform decisions about future actions.

For more information about Reading Recovery or to view site reports, call the Reading Recovery Teacher Leader.

Lori Kelly

Reading Recovery Teacher Leader
T: (250) 398-3821