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Reading Recovery Lesson Overview
Each Reading Recovery lesson is an individual, one-on-one lesson for 30 minutes and
includes the following components:
Familiar re-reading
The lesson begins with something easy--reading known books. It is a time to enjoy
stories and celebrate what the student already knows how to do. Your child reads
3-4 familiar books. This gives your child an opportunity to practice reading
fluently. Beginning readers sometimes read word-by-word; however, children
need to make their reading sound natural like talking, or they will not be able to
understand what they read. Also, it is a time for your child to practice using some
new reading strategies. The teacher does not jump in quickly to correct the child,
but allows the child to use what he/she knows to be an independent reader.
Running record
Your child will read a book which was introduced and read once at the end of the
previous day’s lesson. The teacher will be observing and recording the child’s
reading, noting errors and self-corrections. The teacher will watch to see how the
child solves the tricky parts of the text and only tell words if the child is really
At the end of the reading the teacher will make 1 or 2 teaching points based on
what she saw the child do. The teacher and child will go back to a page to look at
how a problem was solved or to find a hard part to work out together.
You may notice that the teacher ignores some of the student’s errors. It is most
effective to limit the number of teaching points so your child does not feel
overwhelmed and unsuccessful. Students will have other opportunities to read the
text and work out more of the tricky parts in other lessons.
Magnetic letter work
The purpose of this part of the lesson is to help your child understand how letters
and words work. The focus will change over time. Initially the child may search
for specific letters within a jumble of letters. (“Find all the ‘b’s’! “ or “Put the
uppercase and lowercase letter pairs together.”) Your child will work to control a
consistent left-to-right orientation to letters and across words. Later your child will
use the magnetic letters to break known words into familiar parts. Understanding
how words can be taken apart and how the parts in one word look and sound like
parts in other words, helps students use what they know to solve new words in
reading and writing.

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