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Improving the generalization of sound/symbol knowledge: Teaching spelling to kindergarten children with disabilities

O’Connor, R. E.; Jenkins, J. R.
This study examined the effect of combining spelling instruction with code-based reading instruction on the application and transfer of segmentation and letter knowledge to reading by kindergarten students with developmental delays. Ten kindergarten students were matched according to reading progress in Reading Mastery (RM) and randomly assigned to either the experimental or control group. Students in the experimental group received ten minutes of spelling instruction each day for 20 days, while students in the control group received an equal amount of time of reading instruction using the same word lists. A battery of tests was administered for pre- and post-test measures. Results indicate that students in the experimental group significantly improved their spelling and reading skills in comparison to the control group. However, these students did not perform significantly better on a measure of phoneme segmentation. Both groups demonstrated significant improvement in segmenting skills over the course of the intervention. (Copyright © 2011, National Institute for Direct Instruction (NIFDI). All rights reserved).
Research areas:
Main publication type:
Program Effectiveness
Reading; spelling; phoneme segmentation; Reading Mastery; phonological awareness; McCarthy Scales of Children'; s Abilities; Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test; Woodcock Reading Mastery Tests
The Journal of Special Education
Design type:
Pretest-posttest control group design with random assignment
Fidelity monitored:
Students included:
Kindergarten students, students with developmental delays
Experimental school, university campus, Washington State

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