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Reading Research

In 1997, the U.S. Congress asked the Director of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD)* at the National Institutes of Health, in consultation with the Secretary of Education, to convene a national panel --The National Reading Panel (NRP) -- to assess the effectiveness of different approaches used to teach children to read.On April 13, 2000, the NRP submitted its extensive work "The Report of the National Reading Panel: Teaching Children to Read," at a hearing before the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee's Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education. This document was used to informthe groundbreaking education legislation initiated by President George W. Bush entitled NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND, The Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which is today a mandate of every school across the country to close the achievement gap.

According to the extensive review of research related to reading acquisitionby the National Reading Panel, five skill areas have been identified to be emphasized when teaching children to read, as outlined in their guide Put Reading First: The Research Building Blocks For Teaching Children to Read (2001).

Wizcomtech Reading and Translation Pens help educators support these essential components of reading instruction. The following materials outline each skill area needed to become a successful reader, and related strands of support gained with use of Wizcomtech products, benefitting a wide range of reading levels and student populations.These hand-held tech-tools provide valuablesupport for students as they interact with text in meaningful ways; and can be effectively used to improve student achievement in reading.


  1. Research/Evidence
    The development of phonological skills addresses the inability to identify speech sounds, which impedes spelling, word recognition and vocabulary development (Moats, 2001)*Research has shown that students who are taught to analyze speech sounds in words related them to their spellings progress faster in spelling and reading (Moats, 1995).
    READING PEN 2 and READING PEN TS (QUICKTIONARY TS PREMIUM) provide individualized immediate decoding support for unknown words -(highlighted words - letter-sound patterns, and English Text-to-Speech support, where unfamiliar words can be read aloud - offering both interaction with printed text combined with explicit attention to sound structure orally, providing personal phonemic awareness support.


  1. Research/Evidence
    * According to the International Reading Association (IRA) Phonics is   knowing (decoding) the relations between specific printed letters or combination of letters and specific spoken language.
    * When weak student decoding is evident there is little room left for comprehension to take place (Freedman and Calfee, 1984; LaBerge and Samuels, 1974 cited in Blevins, 1998).
    By assisting in the reading process the READING PEN 2, the READING PEN TS (QUICKTIONARY TS Prem) allow individuals to break down words and sound blends, offering the ability to hear words read aloud, spelled out as well as view syllabic division of words like (read-ing) to provide powerful decoding support.


  1. Research/Evidence
    Students can improve their fluency by (Put Reading First, 2001)
    a) hearing models of fluent reading
    b) repeated reading with guidance
    c) combining reading instruction with reading practice at their independent level of reading ability
    Wizcomtech's READING PEN 2, READING PEN TS and QUICKTIONARY TS PREMIUM allow students multiple opportunities to practice (supported) reading fluency. Providing students with opportunities to see it, hear it and then read it - users can build pronunciation and decoding skills, thus increasing sight word recognition and ability to read more smoothly with increased fluency and automaticity.


  1. Research/Evidence
    *Repetition and multiple exposures to new words are crucial for vocabulary development (National Reading Panel, 2000) 
    *Vocabulary provides both definitions and contextual information - to improve reading comprehension (Honig, Diamond and Gutlohn, 2000)
    READING PEN 2, READING PEN TS and QUICKTIONARY TS PREMIUM PENS provide immediate and continuous vocabulary support for students of a wide range of reading skills - offering definitions, synonyms and comprehensive translations that extend beyond frequently used meanings of words. Other key features that support vocabulary development include:

    - Retrieval of last 80 words reviewed for teacher review and ongoing practice (RP2/RPTS)
    - Interactive games for vocabulary practice
    - Spanish translation support at every stage. 
    - recognizing over 500,000 words from the American Heritage® College Dictionary and Roget's II The New Thesaurus (RP2 and RPTS)
    - recognizes over 300,000 words and expressions per 45 language specific dictionaries (Q-TSP)
    - direct look-up of idioms/phrases


  1. Research/Evidence
    *With automatic word recognition, the child does not have to concentrate on words and can concentrate fully on the meaning of text. Chall, 1996; Dowhower, 1987; Ehri, 1995; LaBerge & Samuels, 1974; Perfetti, 1985; Samuels, Scherner & Reinking, 1992
    *Reading comprehension is the product of decoding skill and language comprehension skill. Snow, Burns, and Griffin, 1998.
    READING PEN 2, READING PEN TS and QUICKTIONARY TS PREMIUM each allow students to interact with text in meaningful ways. Reading research indicates that good readers are actively involved in the reading process; Wizcomtech's hand-held literacy support tools offer personal, portable and powerful assistance - helping students move from decoding to fluent pronunciation to reading for meaning.RP 2 and RPTS can help educators identify appropriate text level for students to optimize text "readability." Definition and translation support available with these products help build confidence and competence.


Based on the definition provided in Title IX of No Child Left Behind (ESEA), an English Language Learner (ELL) is a person between the ages of 3 and 21 who is enrolled or plans to enroll in a US school, who is a non-native speaker of English, and who lacks the English language skills (reading, writing, speaking, or listening) necessary to participate meaningfully in a school setting where English is the language of instruction.  Like all other students, ELLs have a right to high quality education opportunities and states, districts, and schools are required to provide services to help these students attain English language proficiency. Through the ‘English Language Acquisition, Language Enhancement, and Academic Achievement Act' within ESEA the federal government recommends the following structure and goals in order to help ELL attain proficiency:

(1) to ensure that children who are limited English proficient, including immigrant children and youth, attain English proficiency, develop high levels of academic attainment in English, and meet the same challenging State academic content and student academic achievement standards as all children are expected to meet;

(2) to assist all limited English proficient children, including immigrant children and youth, to achieve at high levels in the core academic subjects so that those children can meet the same challenging State academic content and student academic achievement standards as all children are expected to meet, consistent with section 1111 (b)(1);

(3) to develop high-quality language instruction educational programs designed to assist State educational agencies, local educational agencies, and schools in teaching limited English proficient children, including immigrant children and youth, to enter all-English instruction settings;

ELL Research/Evidence

*Research shows that English learners can benefit from English literacy instruction well before they have developed full control of the language orally. In other words, oral and written English can develop more or less simultaneously (Hudelson, 1984, 1986; Goodman, Goodman, & Flores, 1979; Urzua, 1987).

*Among other things good ESL products provide help for students in their native language, immediate and corrective feedback (Bishop, 2001).


America's ethnic profile is rapidly changing. In 2000, 1 of every 3 persons in the United States was a member of a minority group or had limited proficiency in English.With cultural differences and academic vocabulary deficits, English language learners need specific pronunciation, definition and spelling support in order to achieve reading success. Wizcomtech's READING PEN TS AND QUICKTIONARY TS PREMIUM provide immediate hand-held literacy support to unlock the essential components of reading without embarrassment for those identified as having limited English proficiency.

With its Text-to-Speech technology - ELLs can immediately hear words, lines or paragraphs spoken aloud in English, to improve phonemic awareness, pronunciation fluency and comprehension. Comprehensive translation support offers ELLs the opportunity to participate in general education curriculum with first-and-second language support. READING PEN TS and QUICKTIONARY TS PREMIUM both effectively support literacy achievement and help students at every reading stage make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) gains.