Capstone/Dissertation Title

Accelerating first grade reading growth through systematic yet responsive phonics instruction





Degree Name



The research question addressed in this capstone was how does a guided reading framework that includes systematic yet responsive phonics instruction accelerate the growth of striving first grade readers? The over-arching goal of this action research project was to accelerate overall reading performance for striving readers. The approach used was embedding systematic phonics mini-lessons within the regular guided reading instruction. The content of these lessons was determined by student need, rather than following a specific scope and sequence. The work of Fountas and Pinnell influenced this project, in developing a mini-lesson format and in selecting appropriate instructional goals. The results of this research support a responsive, student-centered approach that offers phonics instruction through mini-lessons as a method of accelerating student reading performance. All four participants doubled the expected reading growth during this four-week research project.

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