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Betty Ann Levy

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My current research involves investigations of children with major reading problems. Since the mid-‘70s, I’ve published more than 30 papers on reading. Over the past ten years much of my research has focused on reading development, particularly on understanding learning mechanisms relates to early reading success. We use training paradigms to explore specific processing deficits that affect poor readers in the early elementary school years.

My most recent work suggests that although understanding alphabetic segmentation is critical in setting up print representations to guide initial reading, reading practice frees the child from the need to ‘sound out’ and leads to the development of fluency. Children who are classified as ‘double deficit’ by Bowers and Wolf (1993) have the worst prognosis for reading success. These children have a deficit in phonological processing, as well as being the slowest responders on tests of Rapid

Automatized Naming. It is the latter deficit that signals problems in developing fluency, even when the child is able to ‘sound out’ printed words. We are now exploring the nature of this deficit, including methods that can be used to help these children become more fluent. One of my CLLRNet projects involve studies of the emergence of orthographic knowledge, in children aged 4 to 7. A second project involves the study of the development of reading skills in children in French Immersion programmes.

The language and culture of my heritage is passed on to me orally. it's a different way off learning than how I am taught at school. How do I keep my traditional culture alive while learning to read and being immersed in the majority culture?

Reading is the core of learning and staying in school . improving reading skills with young Aboriginal children can open up the doors to future prospects.

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