Science of Reading

The term "science of reading" refers to an interdisciplinary body of scientific evidence that:

  • Informs how students learn to read and write proficiently.
  • Indicates that all students benefit from explicit and systematic instruction in phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary, fluency, comprehension, and writing to become effective readers.
  • Explains why some students have difficulty with reading and writing.
  • Does not rely on any model of teaching students to read based on meaning, structure and syntax, and visual cues, including a three-cueing approach.

See Read Ohio on the Ohio Department of Education and Workforce (ODEW) website.

House Bill (HB) 33 of the 135th Ohio General Assembly mandates a shift in school curriculum, teacher training, and reading intervention approaches. The following resources may be helpful to library staff in youth services and outreach, especially those who plan and present storytimes and early literacy programs.

The ODEW offers a 45-minute course on the science of reading that guides participants in recognizing and explaining the aspects of science of reading and enhances their comprehension of successful approaches to literacy instruction. The course includes a short video, resources, reflection questions, and articles that provide practical steps to improve literacy instruction.

Governor DeWine has posted an 8-minute video that explains science of reading and highlights successful approaches in several Ohio schools.

ABCs of Reading Development is a recorded webinar hosted by the Massachusetts Library System for public library workers. Presenter Julie Bertram covers the Simple View of Reading and development of listening, speaking, phonological awareness, reading, and writing skills in early childhood. She also discusses leveled text through the lens of the experiences of emergent and struggling readers.

Learning to Read at School, Loving to Read at the Library is a recorded webinar hosted by the Colorado State Library for public library workers. Presenter Jess Hesselberg connects public library resources and practices to the science of reading and discusses how public librarians support reading instruction.

Foundations of Literacy: The Science of Reading is a recorded webinar from LENA featuring a panel of educators describing how foundational oral language and literacy skills build to a child's success in learning how to read.

The ODEW's “All Students Can Read” instructional series aims to enhance the knowledge and skills of special educators, using research and theoretical models to support reading science, assessment, and instruction.

Ohio’s Phonics Rule outlines the requirements for teaching phonics. Explicit and Systematic Phonics Instruction is an ODEW Literacy on Demand course that provides helpful strategies, resources and practices in teaching phonics.

Ohio’s Plan to Raise Literacy Achievement is a guide to evidence-based language and literacy teaching and learning for all learners from birth through grade 12. This plan articulates a state literacy framework aimed at promoting proficiency in reading, writing and communication for all learners.

Additional Resources

Ohio Ready to Read is indebted to the Ohio Library Council for source material from OLC's Science of Reading guide.

Ohio Library Council                    State Library of Ohio