Joan Moser

Interventions can be positive and successful, or detrimental and damaging. Pernille Ripp shares a thought-provoking article considering the unintended consequences of reading interventions. What interventions are you finding to be working well?





jana fitzpatrick

I find a few interventions that work for my little friends. More time practicing reading with another staff member who happens to have a small chunk of daily time available can be a lifesaver - especially for students who are for whatever reason not practicing at home. We like a few computer programs - Reading Eggs, Raz-Kids and ReadNaturally Live (NO affiliation.) HOWEVER, every program listed - ESPECIALLY ReadNaturally need adult supervision AND guidance. Plus, they work for a general phase of time and then get “old.” Some of my friends need a human and not time on the computer - it just won’t work for them. I’ve been directed to “What Works Clearinghouse” and feel constrained by limited choices. LLI by Fontas and Pinnell looks great, but my colleagues are already overwhelmed. What interventions do you like Joan?

Karen Winford

I’m really interested in learning what works. I only have 9 students, but they’re all over the board when it comes to reading levels. One is likely dyslexic, and a couple years behind “grade level.” What interventions have you seen that would be helpful for this one? IEP already requires him being “pulled” three times a week, so I’d really like something that could be used in the classroom.

Dianna McTavish

As a Grade 3/4 teacher, I have several children come into their new level a couple of years behind each year. As p-2 students they have spent 3 years with our wonderful early years teachers learning the routines and strategies stemming from the daily 5 and cafe. There is a phenomenal learning happening during this time so I am wondering if my struggling grade 3 readers just need time to practise reading what they want to read. If so could ‘practising reading what they want to read’ be an intervention in itself. Maybe some students need practise and consolidation time rather than been pushed to catch up with the rest of the grade.


I think you have touched on some important points. “Choice” is such an integral part of what the Sisters talk about for all readers–and I think especially for our struggling readers. They already have the mind-set of not being good enough readers, so we need to change that. Presenting them with a variety of books at their good-fit level and letting them choose gives them ownership–and therefore a reason to practice.
In addition to the Sisters, leaders in reading research (such as Richard Allington) talk about how the most important tool in getting students to become stronger and more independent readers is the amount of time actually spent reading!!

jana fitzpatrick

Consider going to the “Vulnerable Readers Summit” ( You will find great research based ideas and yes - more time in print that is at the readers level is the best idea ever! I am a “seasoned” teacher - the timing and information at this summit was the best I have been to in a long time. I think I will go again to the next conference too! AND the book by scholastic:Differentiating reading Instruction for Success with RTI and the book by Dr. Janet Mort: “Joyful Literacy Interventions” are fabulous resources! On a the side note, I discovered another computer program “iread” from HM (no affiliation) that is a better fit for my struggling readers.

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