Curriculum & Instruction » Reading Recovery

Reading Recovery



What is Reading Recovery?

  • Reading Recovery is a short-term intervention of one-to-one teaching for the lowest-achieving first graders.  It is the world’s most widely researched early literacy intervention. The scientific research base has been by the United States Department of Education’s What Works Clearinghouse review of beginning reading programs.  Reading Recovery was the only early reading intervention to earn high ratings for effectiveness in each of the instructional areas studied. 
  • Students receive 30-minute lessons each day for an average of 12-20 weeks from a specially trained teacher. 
  • As soon as students can read and write at grade level and demonstrate that they can continue to progress in the classroom, their lessons are discontinued and new students receive individual instruction.


What can Reading Recovery do for my child?

  • A key premise of Reading Recovery is that early intervention in first grade is critical. Research shows that children who fall behind in Grade 1 tend to remain below grade level in later school years. 
  • Early intervention is important because the gap between the lowest- and highest-performing children is narrow in lower grades but widens later in elementary school. 
  • Numerous studies have examined the effectiveness of Reading Recovery for children with reading difficulties.  The intervention reduces referrals and placements to special education, limits retention, and has other lasting effects. 
  • Since 1984 when Reading Recovery began in the United States, about 8 of 10 students with a full series of lessons met the criteria for successful first-grade reading and writing and do well on standardized state assessments in subsequent years.


Where can I find out more about Reading Recovery and early literacy?

The Reading Recovery Council of North America Web site includes Fact Sheets, articles, and videos.  Their address is