What is a reading approach?

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Over the years teachers have used a variety of approaches to teach reading and writing.


A reading approach is a way to start teaching beginning readers.

Also known as:



Various approaches begin by

  • teaching learners to get meaning from whole chunks of text
  • teaching whole words and going on to larger chunks of text
  • teaching whole words and breaking them down into smaller parts
  • teaching parts of words and putting them together into whole words, or
  • teaching meaning, whole words, and parts of words from the very beginning.

The approaches overlap with some common elements appearing in all of them.


The information here is introductory. You will need to study these approaches in more detail to understand the distinctions.


Here are some kinds of reading approaches:

See also

Context for this page:

Page content last modified: 27 July 1999

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