On Air
0:00
0:00
Open In Popup
MPR News

There's a science to teaching children to read

Share story

Roughly two-thirds of American fourth-graders cannot read at their expected grade level. Children struggling to read in the third grade are likely to be poor readers for their entire lives.

There is a scientifically-backed method to teaching children how to read, but the latest research on reading suggests this practice is not being implemented in most American Schools.

"[We need] to try to create a more seamless system for teacher preparation and to bring in the pre-service programs to recognize that their product is not just a graduate with a certificate. Their product is how well their own students will perform when out in the classroom in k-12 achievement," said Kelly Butler of the Barksdale Reading Institute.

In a recent APM Reports documentary reporter Emily Hanford found that many teachers in training, including the professors instructing them, don't understand reading science.  

Recommended Reading: Kids Struggle to read when schools leave phonics out

Guests:

Kelly Butler is the managing director of the Barksdale Reading Institute

Lori Helman is the Director of the Minnesota Center for Reading Research & Associate Professor of Curriculum and Instruction at the U of M

Use the audio player above to listen to the conversation.