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The Genesis of Transactional Strategies Instruction in a Reading Program for At-Risk Students

Ted Schuder
The Elementary School Journal
Vol. 94, No. 2, Special Issue: Strategies Instruction (Nov., 1993), pp. 183-200
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1001968
Page Count: 18
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The Genesis of Transactional Strategies Instruction in a Reading Program for At-Risk Students
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Abstract

This article describes the problem-solving response of the staff in a large public school system to at-risk students' low achievement and lack of access to the district's enriched reading/language arts curriculum. The staff developed a theory-based, supplemental reading program in cognitive learning strategies to replace remediation for at-risk students and called it SAIL (Students Achieving Independent Learning). The article illustrates the use of current cognitive research in program design and development and describes instruction and training in the program. Instruction starts with explicit teaching of a repertoire of learning strategies during instruction in reading comprehension. It becomes more student centered and refined until it evolves into transactional strategies instruction, a blend of explicit instruction, direct explanation, reader response, and teacher-student-text interactions. Training takes 3-5 years, with the first year being crucial to teacher and, consequently, student success.

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