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Unlock the Power of Reading: The Benefits of Structured Literacy for Teachers and Students – Part 1

by | Nov 29, 2022

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As a teacher, you know that reading is a vital skill that enables students to fully engage with the curriculum and succeed in school and beyond. However, teaching reading can be a complex and challenging task, especially for students who are struggling with the skill. That’s where a structured literacy approach can help.

 

What is a Structured Literacy Approach?

A structured literacy approach is a research-based method of teaching reading and spelling that focuses on the structure of language and the systematic, explicit teaching of the skills and knowledge needed for reading and spelling. This approach is based on the understanding that reading and spelling are complex skills that are built upon a foundation of phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.

The structured literacy approach emphasizes explicit and systematic instruction in these skills, starting with the most basic skills and gradually building upon them as students progress. It also includes a strong emphasis on assessment to ensure that students are receiving instruction that is tailored to their individual needs.

 

Why Teachers Benefit from a Structured Literacy Approach

There are several reasons why teachers benefit from using a structured literacy approach in their reading instruction.

 

  1. It’s research-based: A structured literacy approach is based on solid research and has been shown to be effective in improving reading skills in students of all abilities. This means that you can have confidence in the techniques you are using and trust that they will be effective in helping your students learn to read.
  2. It’s clear and systematic: A structured literacy approach provides a clear and systematic way to teach reading skills, starting with the most basic skills, and gradually building upon them. This makes it easier for teachers to plan their instruction and ensure that they are covering all the necessary skills.
  3. It allows for differentiation: A structured literacy approach includes a strong emphasis on assessment, which allows teachers to identify the specific needs of their students and tailor their instruction to meet those needs. This is especially helpful for students who may be struggling with reading or who have learning disabilities such as dyslexia.
  4. It’s efficient: Because a structured literacy approach is so systematic and explicit, it can be more efficient than other approaches to reading instruction. This means that teachers can cover more material in less time, allowing them to make the most of their instructional time.

 

Why Do Students Benefit from a Structured Literacy Approach?

Students also stand to gain a lot from a structured literacy approach to reading instruction.

  1. It provides a solid foundation: A structured literacy approach helps students build a solid foundation of reading skills that they can build upon throughout their education. This helps to ensure that they have the skills and knowledge they need to become confident, competent readers.
  2. It’s effective: Because a structured literacy approach is based on research and has been shown to be effective in improving reading skills, students who receive instruction using this approach are more likely to experience success in reading.
  3. It allows for individualized instruction: As mentioned above, a structured literacy approach includes a strong emphasis on assessment, which allows teachers to identify the specific needs of their students and tailor their instruction to meet those needs. This individualized instruction can be especially helpful for students who may be struggling with reading or who have learning disabilities.
  4. It’s engaging: A structured literacy approach can be highly engaging for students because it includes a variety of activities and materials that are designed to keep students interested and motivated. This can help to create a positive and supportive learning environment for students.

 

In conclusion, a structured literacy approach is a research-based method of teaching reading and spelling that provides a clear and systematic way to teach the skills needed for reading and writing.

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