The Science of Reading:
Supporting all the Strands of Scarborough's Rope
Free Webinar for Educators
Cracking Open The Science of Reading
Strategies for Equitable Reading Instruction with Geodes
The Key to Literacy Success
When students learn new information, their brains look for ways to connect what they’ve just learned with what they know already. Background knowledge enables students to read and understand texts and build strong vocabulary. As their lexicon grows, they can dive more deeply into a topic and generate more ideas about it through writing. This experience not only helps them build more knowledge but improves the clarity of their communication. Students are better equipped to develop sophisticated thinking and writing skills as they encounter rich knowledge from multiple sources and diverse perspectives.
Read the full research in our primer (available in English and Spanish) on how knowledge building can help students become better readers and writers.
Learn how we curate exceptional core texts rich with content that piques curiosity, represent grade-level complexity, and showcase diverse perspectives.
Reading Guide: Voices from the Community
Read about insights from the Great Minds community of curriculum experts, teachers, and leaders as they share their knowledge and perspective on the science of reading. Find inspiration and guidance from the following research briefs, blog series, implementation stories, and more.
The Winning Trifecta
Foundational Skills + Geodes + Wit & Wisdom =
Proficient Readers, Writers, Speakers, and Listeners
Wit & Wisdom's research-based approach allows students to build both skills and knowledge by developing their reading and writing skills and expanding their vocabulary. Paired with an explicit, systematic foundational skills program, Geodes books allow students to practice their phonics and decoding skills while building enduring knowledge for a deep learning experience.
Learn how Wit & Wisdom, Geodes, and foundational skills programs work harmoniously together to support evidence-based literacy instruction.
Supporting Developing Readers
Helping Emerging Readers Build Knowledge
From the very first page of their very first book, every reader should build knowledge of the world around them while practicing foundational skills. To successfully tackle reading comprehension, high-quality phonics-aligned reading experiences should both cement a child’s decoding abilities and spark interest about the topic and stories students engage with as they learn to read.
Read more about how emerging readers can pick up critical foundational skills while also building knowledge of the world around them.
Read the Latest Science of Reading Posts on the Aha! Blog
Literacy Knowledge: The Relationship Between Reading and Writing
Examining Scarborough’s Rope: Literacy Knowledge
All Students Can Develop Strong Verbal Reasoning
Examining Scarborough’s Rope: Verbal Reasoning
Examining Scarborough’s Rope: Language Structures
Building Vocabulary: Wit & Wisdom®’s Approach to Morphemic Awareness
Examining Scarborough’s Rope: Vocabulary
Examining Scarborough’s Rope: Background Knowledge
The Science of Reading and Wit & Wisdom®
The Quintessential Science of Reading Playlist
Powered by Great Minds, the Melissa & Lori Love Literacy Podcast helps teachers learn about the science of reading, knowledge building, and high-quality curriculum. There are hundreds of episodes to choose from, and we've spotlighted a few must-listen episodes that cover important literacy topics, from phonics to fluency to knowledge building and everything in between. Preview the episodes below and listen to the full playlist.
Emily Hanford Epically Defines the Science of Reading
Emily Hanford addresses the misinterpretation of the term and what it really means. She shares thoughts on teacher prep programs and where teachers get knowledge about what or how to teach, contemplates why teacher prep programs are not preparing teachers to teach kids how to read, and how curriculum plays a role in helping teachers who do not know the science of reading.
The Little Things Teachers Do Every Day Are Actually Big Things
Kristin Poppens teaches kindergarten in Iowa and is just learning about the science of reading. She's applied evidence-based, self-taught practices for less than six months, and her students reached end-of-year benchmarks with 100% success rate. Kristin's district uses Units of Study as a core curriculum—but now that Kristin knows better, she's doing better for her students.
Kindergarten Team Reaches Nearly 100% Success Using Evidence-Based Practices
Kristin Poppens returns to the podcast to share the power of teacher teamwork and collaboration. Her Kindergarten teammates and Speech Language Pathologist (SLP) join her to explain how they use evidence-based practices to reach 100% success for every single student because all means ALL.
Two Literacy Icons on the Standards, Assessment, & Data
Meredith Liben and Sue Pimentel share the true intentions of the CCSS vs. how they are currently interpreted. They also provide observations about how the Standards play out in classrooms and schools with HQIM and what happens in the absence of HQIM.
Australian Teacher Lays the Foundation of Reading Science
James Dobson is an educator who has been teaching for more than a decade in Australia. He has worked as a classroom teacher, lead teacher, literacy learning specialist, and principal. On this episode, he discusses his blog post titled Laying the Foundations, One Teacher’s Journey. James illuminates his journey with the science of reading on his blog, Laying the Foundations.
Sonia Cabell on the Importance of Content-Rich ELA Instruction
Dr. Sonia Cabell, Associate Professor at Florida State University, shares the importance of both oral language and content knowledge instruction. Why? Oral language skills underlie our ability to comprehend text. At the same time, the knowledge we bring to a text is THE key determinant of how much we understand that text. This episode speaks to the entirety of Scarborough's reading rope.
Reading is Rocket Science with Louisa Moats
Why is teaching reading so important? Melissa and Lori have a conversation with Louisa Moats grounded in this article: Teaching Reading is Rocket Science: What Expert Teachers of Reading Should Know and Be Able to Do. Moats asserts that 95% of students can learn to read when taught to do so using evidence-based practices. In this episode, listen as they discuss and define the term science of reading while connecting decades of research and theory to classroom practice.
Re-thinking the Reading Rope with Nell Duke
In this episode, Nell K. Duke discusses her articles, The Science of Reading Progresses (co-authored by Kelly B. Cartwright) and The Science of Reading Comprehension Instruction (co-authored by Alessandra E. Ward, P. David Pearson), and unpacks how the science of reading has progressed over the last 20 years, moving beyond the simple view of reading. Tune in to hear how the research around the nature of comprehension has evolved and for strategies to support students’ reading development.