Direct Instruction and the Teaching of Early Reading: Wisconsin's Teacher-Led Insurgency, Wisconsin Policy Research Institute
May 23, 2001
Fans of "direct instruction," and those who would like to learn more about it, will want to examine this new report from the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute. It was catalyzed by three facts: (a) Direct Instruction, properly done, is a teaching method (and curriculum) that is known to be effective, particularly with younger children and especially in reading. (b) Direct Instruction is nonetheless shunned by most of the public education establishment, notably including teacher preparation programs. (c) Despite that, Wisconsin has elements of what might be termed a D.I. insurgency or, at least, underground movement, i.e. some schools are actually using it. So scholars Mark Schug, Sara Tarver and Richard Western went off to investigate how Direct Instruction works "on the ground." The result is interesting and heartening. D.I. indeed works?though its implementation is a challenge for many teachers, meaning that their training would have to be recast in order for it to be used extensively. Yet its use could minimize the extent and cost of remediation and some special education. This one is worth your while. Contact the Wisconsin Policy Research Institute, Inc. at P.O. Box 487, Thiensville, WI 53092. Phone (262) 241-0514. Fax (262) 241-0774. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Or surf to http://www.wpri.org.