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This study used latent growth models to compare growth in oral reading skills over one year for students using 6 different reading curricula: Open Court, Reading Mastery, Harcourt, Houghton Mifflin, Scott Foresman, Success for All. Over 30,000 students were included in the analysis. Students were randomly selected from participating schools. The dependent measure was Oral Reading Fluency, assessed with DIBELS passages at four times during the school year. Growth differed by grade level and curriculum. The authors summarized the results (p. 209) “Overall, students in the Reading Mastery curriculum demonstrated generally greater ORF growth than students other curricula. Also, they more frequently met or exceeded benchmarks for adequate achievement in first, second and third grade.” The effect size for Reading Mastery versus other curricula in first grade was .44. (Copyright © 2011, National Institute for Direct Instruction (NIFDI). All rights reserved).
This paper examines changes in the average mathematics achievement of students in the Baltimore City Public School System (BCPSS) from 1998 to 2003, comparing students in schools that implemented Direct Instruction with students in other schools. First grade students who received Direct Instruction had significantly higher levels of achievement on the Comprehensive Test of Basic Skills (CTBS) subtests of mathematics computations and mathematics concepts and applications. Differences were greater when measures of schools’ socio-demographic context were controlled and as Direct Instruction became fully implemented and incorporated within the schools. Among students who began first grade in the BCPSS and remained in the same schools five years later as fifth graders, those who had received Direct Instruction as first graders had significantly higher scores on the measure of mathematics concepts and applications than students in the other schools. (Copyright © 2011, National Institute for Direct Instruction (NIFDI). All rights reserved).
Thirty-seven four-year-old students in a Head Start program in a suburban community in the southern United States were randomly assigned to receive 30 minutes of additional instruction each day in their usual language arts curriculum or 30 minutes of instruction with the Direct Instruction program, Funnix Beginning Reading. Instruction for the Funnix group was provided by high school-aged tutors, who were trained and supervised by an experienced teacher. Pretesting before instruction began indicated no significant differences between the two groups in the DIBELS letter naming fluency or initial sound fluency measures. However, by winter and spring the students in the Funnix group had significantly higher scores on numerous measures of beginning literacy. Significant differences remained with multivariate analyses that controlled for initial levels of skill and minority status. Equivalent results also appeared when a reduced sample that individually matched children on pretest scores and minority status was used. Effect sizes (Cohen’s d) in winter and spring ranged from .51 to 2.24, depending on the measure that was used. (Copyright © 2011, National Institute for Direct Instruction (NIFDI). All rights reserved).