Academic journal article Educational Research Quarterly

Increasing Reading Fluency Using Read Naturally® with Two Third Grade Students with Specific Learning Disabilities: A Replication of Erickson et Al., 2015

Academic journal article Educational Research Quarterly

Increasing Reading Fluency Using Read Naturally® with Two Third Grade Students with Specific Learning Disabilities: A Replication of Erickson et Al., 2015

Article excerpt

According to the National Reading Panel (2000), reading fluency is the skills to read text both accurately and quickly. The speed at which a student reads a piece of text is essential to becoming a fluent reader. Shriver (2001) felt that fluency affects reading as a whole because it provides bridge between word recognition and comprehension. Fluent readers have the ability to decode words at a faster rate while comprehending the text (Shapiro, 2011). Students do not necessarily become fluent readers quickly or without practice. It can take time for students to build the stamina to push through decoding words to read at a fluent level of reading as "at the earliest stages of reading development, students' oral reading is slow and labored because students are just learning to attach sounds to letters and to blend letter sounds into recognizable words" (Chard, Vaughn, & Tyler, 2002). As text becomes more difficult a student's fluency rate may decrease, as they have to again focus on decoding text. An instructional approach to increasing a student's reading fluency is through the repetition of reading the same text, known as repeated reading (Dowhower, 1987). Repeated reading substantially improves a student's ability to recognize words, decode words, and increase reading speed therefore making them a more fluent reader. Moyer (1982) reported, the student's error rate appeared to be high on the initial reading and throughout the use of repeated reading errors decreased.

A commercially available repeated reading program such as Read Naturally®, focuses on using the most common words in the English-language in the program's passages. This program has been shown to promote oral reading fluency in students (Reutzel, & Cooter, 2009). Denton, Fletcher, Anthony, and Francis (2006) conducted to evaluate the efficacy of the Read Naturally® program over an 8-week period. Their participants received the intervention every day for over 30 minutes. The reading fluency of their participants significantly increased due to the repeated reading aspect of the program. Their participants' scores on placement and state tests also improved, as they were able to more fluently read the text. According to the first authors, the use of the repeated reading could improve the on the abilities of students with severe reading impairments to fluently and accurately read words from lists or text.

The Read Naturally® program uses three methods to improve a student's fluency rate (Hasbrouck.Ihnot, & Rogers, 1999). These are teacher modeling, repeated reading, and progress monitoring. Each is used to ensure the students words per minute rate increfrom using the program (Hasbrouck et al., 1999). Teacher modeling is used to ensure the students understand the program and its advantages. Repeated reading is used to overall increase the student's word recognition and become more fluent in reading. Progress monitoring is used in order for the students to see positive results from the program. The students are able to graph their own progress, which helps with their self-esteem. Read Naturally® uses the term, words per minute or wpm, to determine the student's number of words that they read in a timed minute. The student's skills at reading correct words per minute directly relates to fluency (Shapiro, 2011). The Read Naturally® program incorporates a new passage a session that the students read two to three times alone, listen to on an audiotape three to five times, and reads to the first author two to four times which emphasizes the use of repeated reading.

Read Naturally® can be used as an intervention to improve reading (Denton et al., 2006). All students that struggle with reading fluency can benefit from participating in the intervention by using the program. Students with specific learning disabilities can especiaUy benefit from the intervention. Numerous research studies have been conducted that suggest that "effective intervention fro budding fluency sküls for students with learning disabiUties include, providing multiple opportunities to repeatedly read familiar text independently and with corrective feedback, and the employ a performance criteria along with increasing text difficulty" (Rasinski, 2012 p. …

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