Which Reading Levels Work Best Together? Can we Include Students with Special Needs? The 2011–2013 Group Report

  • Shana Ingram


The study’s results suggest that the Reading Orienteering Club offers potential as an after-school community-based reading program. The Reading Orienteering Club uses group-centered prevention teaching techniques and employs intrinsic motivation and vowel clustering to address the needs of children presently failing in reading. Analysis of the data showed consistent improvement in spelling, reading, comprehension, and sight words for all students. Scores for students identified with special needs did not reflect as much improvement as the scores from other students, but this is to be expected. Every student is an individual and learns at their own pace. Students with special needs will obviously learn at a slower pace. We are encouraged by the improvement shown by the special needs students. Future research should examine teaching methods. The way that children are grouped together often determines their success or failure when they are learning to read.


Reading failure Special needs students At-risk students Group-centered prevention Reading groups Individualized learning Differentiated learning Vowel clustering Intrinsic motivation Group prevention 



  1. 1.

    Special appreciation to Keri Weed, Ph.D. and Elaine Clanton Harpine, Ph.D., University of South Carolina Aiken, for allowing their students to work on the project.

  2. 2.

    A special thank-you to St. John’s United Methodist Church in Aiken for providing community volunteers and financial sponsorship, and for allowing us to use their classroom space for this project.

  3. 3.

    Portions of this research were presented at the 121st Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association at Orlando, Florida. August 2, 2012.

  4. 4.

    Portions of this research were presented at the 122nd Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association at Honolulu, Hawai’i. July 31, 2013.

  5. 5.

    Shana Ingram has a B.A. in psychology and English from USC Aiken and an M.A. in clinical psychology from Western Carolina University. She has been participating in adolescent research at West Virginia University since completing her master’s degree and has plans to continue conducting research and providing clinical services with rural populations.



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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shana Ingram
    • 1
  1. 1.University of South Carolina AikenAikenUSA

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