Karen L Parker
Primary Subject Area
fluency, oral reading, independent silent reading, word wall, automaticity, second grade
The researcher measured the effectiveness of two popular supplemental reading instruction strategies, word walls and independent silent reading, in 6 second-grade classes over 12 weeks. The study involved the comparison of eight oral reading fluency growth measures (Rate, Accuracy, Fluency, Comprehension, Oral Reading Quotient--overall oral reading ability, Sight Word Efficiency, Phonemic Decoding Efficiency, and Total Word Reading Efficiency). The researcher used the individually administered Gray Oral Reading Tests (fourth edition) and the Test of Word Reading Efficiency in a pretest-intervention-posttest experimental design to obtain these measures. Although pretest and posttest comparisons of the standard scores and percentile ranks revealed no statistically significant effects for either intervention group when compared to the Control group, actual gain score grade equivalency comparisons to the anticipated gains of 3 months were statistically significant for all three groups for almost every measure. The researcher concluded that although the daily use of Word Walls and the daily use of Independent Silent Reading both appear to be effective reading instruction strategies for second grade students, other reading instruction strategies (employed by the Control group) appear to be comparably effective. All three groups experienced a remarkable gain in overall oral reading ability according to the GORT-4 Oral Reading Quotient measure. This dramatic gain over the beginning three months of second grade suggests this period may be a crucial phase of reading fluency development.