Reading Recovery

Reading Recovery is a supplementary education program that aims to offer the lowest-achieving first-grade children an effective method of English language reading and writing instruction. It was designed to compromise between the two "schools" of beginning reading education, intensive phonics instruction and the whole language approach.

The program was developed in the 1970s by New Zealand educator Dr. Marie Clay. In 1984 Dr. Gay Su Pinnell and Dr. Charlotte Huck of Ohio State University introduced the method to the United States. "Reading Recovery" is a registered trademark of Ohio State University in the U.S.

Reading Recovery sites operated in four Canadian provinces, 48 U.S. States, and the District of Columbia. Approximately 60,000 North American children were served by Reading Recovery educators during the 1993-94 school year. In California alone, more than 500 school districts served approximately 5000 children. The program is also implemented in Australia, Canada, and England.

According to its inventors and advocators, Reading Recovery combines extensive teacher education with an emphasis on the development of phonological awareness and the use of contextual information to assist reading. They claim it to be an educationally sound and cost-effective early intervention program for helping children who are at-risk of early reading failure.