Pros and Cons of Top Literacy Intervention Programs

Literacy Intervention Programs

Literacy intervention programs are in high demand because of an increasing number of students getting to high school in record numbers who do not know how to read. These programs are revolutionizing education while giving students and parents the needed tools to be successful in the classroom by working smarter.

What is a literacy intervention program?

A literacy intervention program is “a supplementary program to address an identified or anticipated reading problem” according to researchers. These programs come in both remedial and preventative versions to help students with anticipated problems or those experiencing them currently. Typically, literacy intervention needs to be started as soon as a problem is realized, but often parents do not know that there are resources available. School districts are doing a large amount of research and testing to target potential students for intervention programs and implementing them in the classroom and requiring work at home to stay ahead.

The most important form of preventative programs are aimed at younger children who are thought be at risk for developing reading problems. These programs include measures that can be taken by classroom teachers, but the most effective programs utilize all possible resources.

Top literacy intervention programs

We will compare and contrast some of the top programs and help give parents and teachers effective tools to help them make an informed decision.

Soar to Success

This reading program has been used since the late 1990’s to help students in grades 3-8 become better readers. According to its product description, it provides 18 authentic trade books per level that are sequenced from easy to more challenging, at each of the grade levels. There is a comprehensive Teacher’s Manual with complete lesson plans and assessment tools. The Soar to Success literacy intervention program prides itself on the systematic, scaffolded, small-group instruction in comprehension and the use of proven strategies, including decoding, reciprocal teaching, and graphic organizers. This program is effective for use inside the classroom, but it is not recommended for home use because it focuses on group dynamics as an important part of success. Students who are placed in this program have success when the small group is monitored effectively.

Response to Intervention (RTI)

This program is used in many school districts nationwide for the diagnosis of learning disabilities. This program is said to hold “considerable promise” for its emerging and revolutionary methodology. In the RTI model, students who are suspected of having problems or show a lag in academic achievement are given research-validated interventions. This program monitors student progress and if there is a failure to show improvement, or a failure in “response to intervention” it can be considered as evidence of an underlying learning disability.

This program is highly precise and is effective to help schools diagnose learning disabilities at early ages. It tracks precise information pertaining to an individual student’s needs which provides helpful information for teachers and parents. The disadvantage of this system has much to do with its implementation and variables. If schools do not have the needed learning structures and academic structures, then the tests will result in high numbers of students showing learning disabilities when the problem is not with the student. If teachers are not willing to do all the work required to make this system effective, then it will do more harm than good as a reading intervention program.

Reading intervention software

These types of reading intervention programs have been shown to be highly effectively among students of the technology age. These programs incorporate all the same elements of other reading programs with the addition of interactive games and technology. These programs are affordable and available for students in all grade levels. Some of the main and most reputable programs include: READ 180, Reading Success Lab, Voyager Passport, MindPlay, RAPS 360, and Earobics. Literacy intervention programs that are available through software are multi-sensory and when monitored correctly, have minimal down-sides.

Additional Resources

40 Reading Intervention Strategies for K-6 Students: Research-Based Support for RTI
Response to Intervention (RTI) and English Learners: Making it Happen
Interventions for Reading Success
Improving Reading: Interventions, Strategies, and Resources W/ CD
Intervention Strategies to Follow Informal Reading Inventory Assessment: So What Do I Do Now? (2nd Edition)
The Struggling Reader: Interventions That Work

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