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Building The Reading Brain, PreK-3.

BUILDING THE READING BRAIN, PRE K-3. Patricia Wolfe & Pamela Nevills. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press, 2004. 182 pp. Paperback, $28.95; hardcover, $64.95. Patricia Wolfe, lecturer and author of the popular Brain Matters, Translating Research Into Classroom Practice, joins with education consultant Pamela Nevills to combine expertise and passion regarding the brain's role in developing reading. The authors propose that to remediate early reading problems, "a systematic study of the brain may offer the best hope" (p. 14).

Drawing on cutting-edge neurobiological research in reading and language, the authors translate relevant scientific information into recommendations for effective reading practices. They note that brain studies reveal a natural propensity for language. They discuss the biological basis of language and reading development and look carefully at key brain structures that can develop visual, auditory, attention, and memory problems that affect reading success.

All children, but especially at-risk children and second language learners, need early detection and remediation of reading problems. Wolfe and Nevills reassure readers that "regardless of the source of the reading problem, nearly all deficits can be overcome with appropriate direct explicit instruction" (p. 152). The authors clarify developing reading processes, which include phonemic awareness, print concepts, phonics, word recognition, spelling, writing, comprehension, and fluency. With this information as background, assessment tools and remedial strategies and programs are reviewed and aligned with each reading process. This specific knowledge allows the teacher or parent to match the child's reading needs with the correct remedial approach. A few of the remedial programs reviewed include Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS), Fast ForWord, Lindamood-Bell, Visualizing and Verbalizing, Earobics, Read Naturally, and Language.

Nancy Speaker, lecturer in the field of

reading at California State Polytechnic

University, Pomona
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Author:Speaker, Nancy
Publication:Childhood Education
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Dec 22, 2004
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