A recent study shows the importance of early intervention in reading for at-risk students.
Certain difficulties in kindergarten predict more serious disabilities by grade 5. Students who had difficulty understanding the concept of numerical quantities (e.g., that the digit "3" represents three dots on a page) in kindergarten were far more likely to be diagnosed with with a math learning disability by grade 5 than kindergarten students who understood the concept of numerical quantities. By the time students reach grade 5 with a learning disability, they have usually fallen considerably behind their peers, making successful intervention much more difficult. This study, published in the Journal of Educational Psychology, could help educators develop universal screening procedures for fundamental skill deficits that predict future problems, allowing early intervention to occur in the early grades, before students fall behind their peers. Click here to read more about this study.