Instruction on this site follows the scope of the simple view of reading, the content and sequence of Ehri and her colleagues’ phases for decoding, and the comprehension strategies commended by NRP.
To do so, the site adapts the balanced approaches used in Embedded Phonics (EP) and Peer Assisted Learning Strategies (PALS) because of their theoretical coherence, demonstrated effectiveness, and real-world applicability.
Both EP and PALS use patterns that balance synthetic drills and authentic application. Both use synthetic, decontextualized, direct, and explicit instruction of phonics, sight words, and comprehension strategies balanced with authentic reading in meaningful text with skilled assistance. This balanced approach systematically ties isolated decoding and comprehension skills to purposeful reading.
In addition to balance, EP and PALS feature other beneficial elements. Both programs explicitly use systematic phonics to teach phonemic awareness. Systematic, direct, explicit phonics instruction to address PA deficits has been demonstrated to be an effective intervention for students struggling to read. Both programs stress fluency.
They also emphasize individualized instruction, the generalization of skills, and the application of multiple comprehension strategies. Finally, to promote learning and independence, both integrate routines for positive and corrective feedback. In all, they provide practical models of instruction for students of many abilities and needs.
With all of that, keep in mind that the central goal of reading instruction is reading.
Ehri & McCormick, 1998
Ehri & Soffer, 1999
Mathes et al, 1999
Mathes et al, 2003
Torgesen et al, 2001