Building Decoding Fluency in Children with Reading Delay and Antisocial Behaviour.
Thesis DisciplineHealth Sciences
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Science
The present study firstly aimed to identify children with delayed reading who were missing the component skills of decoding fluency and who also displayed antisocial behaviour in the classroom. It also aimed to replicate with them an intervention designed by Church, Nixon, Zintl and Williams (2005). The study finally aimed to explore the question of whether children who have both a reading delay and a disruptive behaviour disorder require a reinforcement scheme to maintain their engagement in learning activities. Six participants worked with same-age peer tutors on specially-designed practice activities for approximately 20 minutes a day, four times a week, for 8-18 sessions. Improvement in decoding fluency and prose reading fluency was tracked for each child throughout the intervention. Results showed that the six participants gained, on average, sixteen months on their age-equivalent score for reading rate. Decoding fluency scores increased from a pre-test average of 16 correct graphemes per minute to 32 correct graphemes per minute at the post-test measure. Reading accuracy improved by an average of five months and reading comprehension by an average of six months. The gains in reading rate are most likely due to the practice opportunities afforded by the testing procedures as decoding fluency scores did not improve enough to have had a direct impact on the learners’ prose reading ability. Implications for remedial reading interventions with children with behaviour problems are discussed.