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Reading Recovery

A one-to-one tutoring intervention to reduce the number of first-grade students who have extreme difficulty learning to read and write and to reduce the cost of these learners to educational systems.

The program is an intensive one-to-one tutoring intervention program for the poorest readers (lowest 20%) in first-grade classrooms. During daily 30-minute lessons, teachers who are specifically trained in Reading Recovery techniques individually tutor up to eight faltering readers to help them develop the kinds of strategies that good readers use. For the first 10 days, the teacher does not teach, but rather, explores reading and writing with the child to determine specific needs. During the following days, Reading Recovery lessons evolve around reading small story books (the teacher chooses from 500 books organized into 20 reading levels), manipulating letters and words, and composing and writing a story. Specific skills taught include problem-solving strategies based on self-monitoring, cross-checking, predicting, and confirming, as well as the use of multiple sources of information while reading and writing. Children typically leave the program within 12 to 20 weeks (60 sessions), as soon as they have reached about the average level of text reading for their class.

Learn more about our Model and Promising programs.


Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development
University of Colorado Boulder
Institute of Behavioral Science
UCB 483, Boulder, CO 80309


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Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development is
currently funded by Arnold Ventures (formerly the Laura and John Arnold Foundation) and historically has received funding from the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.