Reading recovery as a small group intervention : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Education at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand
A small scale pilot study and a larger experimental study were undertaken to determine whether the Reading Recovery procedures could be successfully adapted for small group instruction. The purpose of the pilot study was to determine effective ways of working and to make recommended changes, if necessary, to the standard Reading Recovery lesson format. The experimental study was designed to see if these modifications would be as effective as the standard one to one Reading Recovery program. Both studies involved a high percentage of children for whom English was a second or third language. Pilot study teachers, working with either two or three children, devised ways of working with children reading at the same instructional level and with children working at different instructional levels. The experimental study involved seventy five children. Fifty of these children were taught in a pair situation and twenty five were taught one to one. A wide battery of tests including the Observation Survey (Clay 1993), a word reading test and tests of phonological processing ability was administered to all children prior to commencing the program, at the end of their program, and at year end. The results from both studies suggest that one to one Reading Recovery can be successfully modified for small group instruction, the preferred group size being two. Results from both studies indicated that by investing at most 27% more instructional time, the teachers could service 100% more children.