Teacher giving Alphabetic Knowledge instruction to a small group of young and engaged students in a classroom

Research Brief: Decontextualized Alphabetic Knowledge Instruction Produces Positive Results

Tuesday, January 28, 2020
Findings suggest a systematic approach to teaching this prerequisite skill for decoding and writing.
Two teachers in front of a class of young students sitting at their desks

Effective Literacy Lesson: Teaching Consonant Digraphs

Tuesday, January 14, 2020
This decoding skill helps students read, understand, and independently spell words.
Students at a long desk taking a written exam

Research Brief: Does It Matter When Students Read the Items on a Comprehension Assessment?

Tuesday, December 17, 2019
Researchers examined the common approach of having students read the questions before the text on a comprehension test to see how it impacted student performance compared to reading the questions after the text.
Green graphic with IRRC and Cedar Rapids Community School District branding saying "Q & A with Cedar Rapids Community School District Administrators"

Using a Data-Driven Instructional Cycle to Improve Core Literacy Instruction in Middle School

Tuesday, December 3, 2019
Learn about an instructional cycle that also involves coaching and planning next steps as a team in our Q&A with Cedar Rapids Schools’ administrators.
Two women in a school hallway smiling with class materials in their hands

Technically Speaking: Why We Use Random Assignment in Reading Research

Tuesday, November 19, 2019
Essential principles of study design lead to causal results showing effects on student outcomes.
Students standing in a row in classroom and smiling

Technically Speaking: Why We Use Random Sampling in Reading Research

Tuesday, November 12, 2019
Essential principles of study design lead to generalizable results for a wide reach of students.
Blue Jay in a birdbath

Effective Literacy Lesson: Understanding Compound Words Through Their Two Word Parts

Tuesday, October 22, 2019
Teach students to read and understand a compound word by identifying the two words that make it.
Teen on cell phone with earbuds in looking off in the distance

Effective Literacy Lesson: Constructing an Argumentative Claim

Tuesday, October 8, 2019
Students learn to write a debatable, focused, and clear claim with this instructional approach.
2 students filling out graphic organizer at desk

Effective Literacy Lesson: Making and Evaluating Predictions to Support Comprehension

Tuesday, September 24, 2019
An instructional sequence shows how to help students integrate new info with their mental representation of the text.
Students using computers in classroom lab

Research Brief: Discussing a Vocabulary Graphic Organizer with an Online Partner May Help Students Learn Science Content

Tuesday, September 10, 2019
Students using the electronic organizer with online discussion showed a stronger path to increased science learning.
Teachers talking in a classroom together with a tablet

One District’s Journey to Every Middle School Student Achieving Literacy Proficiency

Tuesday, June 4, 2019
Cedar Rapids schools are creating a shared literacy instructional vision and partnering with the Iowa Reading Research Center.
Student practicing handwriting at home with pencil and paper

The Continued Importance of Handwriting Instruction

Tuesday, May 21, 2019
Learning handwriting and practicing it in the home and at school helps early readers learn to recognize letters.
Teacher making copies of a page for class

Filling the Gaps: Text Sets Build Background Knowledge and Improve Comprehension of Informational Texts

Tuesday, May 7, 2019
Consider the objective of the unit and what students already know, and then begin building a diverse set of texts for students to read.
Mother and daughter read on couch together

Caregiver Involvement When Reading Books to Children

Tuesday, April 23, 2019
Children’s literacy development benefits when they discuss four key elements of stories read by their caregivers.
Teacher using structured literacy to teach a small group using flash cards

An Explanation of Structured Literacy, and a Comparison to Balanced Literacy

Tuesday, April 9, 2019
An explicit or implicit approach to literacy learning? See why the former approach tends to work better for all learners.