Reading: K-3

Considerations | Strategies | Literature Review


Considerations for ELLs

From kindergarten through grade 3, learning to read is a particularly intense endeavor for both teachers and learners. During this critical time period, students are "cracking the code" and building the foundations for lifelong literacy. To support this process, effective teachers carefully integrate reading into daily classroom activities, capitalizing on how reading, writing, speaking, and listening support one another. As you read these practices, consider how children learn many things through emulation. You serve as a literacy model for your students to emulate when you read, write and talk about your thinking processes

ELLs who have not learned to read in their primary or home language face the enormous challenge of acquiring the initial concepts and skills of literacy in English, a language they have not fully mastered. Others who have already developed literacy and academic skills in their home languages must apply their literacy knowledge to the task of reading English, with its distinct sound system, spelling patterns, vocabulary, and sentence patterns. In addition, ELLs often have to make meaning from texts that require cultural knowledge different from their own. Finally, many ELLs find reading difficult because they have not previously experienced consistent schooling or appropriate instruction in either language.


  1. Teachers combine multiple research-based methods and strategies into a coherent plan for reading instruction that meets the diverse learning needs of their students.
  2. Teachers use systematic and explicit instruction to develop students' phonemic awareness.
  3. Teachers develop students' phonic skills through systematic instruction on sound-symbol relationships, spending appropriate time to meet individual needs.
  4. Teachers frequently engage students in oral reading to develop their reading fluency.
  5. Teachers use numerous research-based methods for both direct and indirect vocabulary instruction.
  6. Teachers promote students' reading comprehension through research-supported techniques and explicit strategies.
  7. Teachers use computer technology to support reading instruction.

Literature Review