isolation and monitor the effect of such training on their later word reading. Studies of this type generally show small effects (for discussions with respect to phoneme awareness and letter knowledge, see Castles & Coltheart, 2004, and Piasta & Wagner, 2010, respectively).
generally accepted that the best form of evidence for addressing causal theories comes from randomized experiments that address putative causal processes (Foster, 2010).
large-scale randomized trial for children’s reading disorders
lose relationship between learning to read and children’s phonological skills (see Bowey, 2005, and Melby-Lervåg, Lyster, & Hulme, 2012, for reviews).
ability to isolate and manipulate phonemes in spoken words is one causal influence on the development of word-reading skills (Muter, Hulme, Snowling, & Stevenson, 2004).
Conversely, other researchers have argued that phoneme-manipulation skills may be a consequence rather than a cause of variations in children’s reading skills (Castles & Coltheart, 2004; Morais, Cary, Alegria, & Bertelson, 1979; Ziegler & Goswami, 2005; but see Hulme, Caravolas, Malkova, & Brigstocke, 2005, and Hulme, Snowling, Caravolas, & Carroll, 2005, for a different view)
letter knowledge is a key independent predictor of the development of word reading, although this does not necessarily imply that letter knowledge causes improved reading skill; some researchers have argued that letter knowledge is better considered an indicator of parental support in literacy or of visual-verbal learning ability (Foulin, 2005).
phoneme awareness and letter knowledge are both needed for a true understanding of the alphabetic principle
training each of these skills in isolation would not be particularly effective in improving early reading skills.
show larger effects, which suggests that the joint effects of these different types of knowledge is critical (Hatcher, Hulme, & Ellis, 1994).
remedial reading intervention that was based on the theory that phoneme awareness and letter-sound knowledge are two causal influences on reading development
phonology and reading intervention (Bowyer-Crane et al., 2008) that directly taught letter-sound knowledge and phoneme awareness produced significant improvements in these two skills and in early word-level literacy skills.
letter-sound knowledge and phoneme awareness measured at the end of the intervention fully mediated the improvements seen in the children’s word-level literacy skills measured 5 months later.
strong support for the theory that weaknesses in letter-sound knowledge and phoneme awareness are two causes of difficulties in mastering word-level literacy skills
understand the mappings between letters in printed words and the phonemes in spoken words. To do this, they need to possess phonemically structured representations of speech, as well as letter-sound knowledge.
strong support for a theory that early reading development depends critically on phonemic skills and letter-sound knowledge.
phonemic skills and letter-sound knowledge are two causal influences on the development of reading skills leads to recommendations that these skills should be directly taught to all children in the early stages of learning to read.
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