Fluent reading for Dyslexia poses a great challenge, but they are not the only ones that are facing it. Reading fluency is a skill to learn for regular readers as well. Reading fluency is the ability to read with accurate word recognition, at a rapid rate, and with proper expression. With the combination of accurate and speed word recognition, it gives automaticity to reading. In addition, to achieve finesse in oral reading, prosody is an important factor that includes proper stress, rhythm, intonation, and text phrasing or chunking.
Based on the National Reading Panel (2007), assessment and recommendations were made about the best ways to teach children to read is to build these 5 blocks of reading instructions.
- Phonemic awareness
- Phonics Instruction
- Text comprehension
One of the key characteristics of dyslexia, poor verbal memory, caused Dyslexic readers to quickly forget what they just read, and they spent most of their focus on decoding each word in the passage than understanding what they read. Reading fluency provides a bridge between word decoding and text comprehension which is necessary for good comprehension, enjoyment, and motivation to read.
To enable fluent reading for Dyslexia learners, they must develop automaticity at the word level. Word reading practice that repeats till the words are recognized quickly and accurately is very helpful in this aspect. Do note that an average child needs between 4-14 exposures to a new word to recognize it automatically, while a child with SpLD needs more than 40 exposures to get familiar with a new word.
Readers should start with high-frequency words or phrases. I will recommend these 2 lists that classify the high-frequency words and the literacy level.
- Dolch List: https://sightwords.com/sightwords/dolch/#lists
- Fry List: https://sightwords.com/sight-words/fry/#lists
To progress through academic successes, fluent reading for Dyslexia is necessary to manage a high volume of reading requirements, and dyslexic readers need interventions to learn reading fluency techniques explicitly.
I will share more on some of the common reading techniques that improve fluency over time.