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From The CriticsReviewer: Silvia A. Martinez, EdD, CCC-S(George Washington University)
Description: This book addresses the need to work with children in the area of in-depth auditory and reading comprehension skills which, as the authors note, are the bases for gaining more knowledge. It contains assessment and intervention procedures and materials which have been developed following a series of sequential steps.
Purpose: This book presents materials for assessing and addressing listening and reading comprehension skills in children who are in regular or special education placements. It builds on previous reported assessment research by developing a series of assessment and intervention steps to be used in the elementary school setting by a variety of professionals. The objectives are worthwhile because the authors have established a direct link between the evaluation process and results, and the development of applied intervention steps. The majority of assessment instruments in the marketplace lack the intervention component and this book addresses this situation.
Audience: This book is written for use by a variety of practitioners in elementary schools since the target audience may be children from both regular and special education settings. According to the authors, the assessment and intervention methods and materials contained in this book may be used by regular education teachers as well as special education and reading specialists. The principal author is a well known researcher in the area of speech-language pathology who has authored many articles and many assessment tools for a diversity of children. The coauthor has more than 20 years in the field and has authored a number of clinical books.
Features: This book contains materials practitioners will need to carry out all the necessary steps for assessing children in grades 2 to 7. The assessment component contains stimulus stories, materials, and instructions for the administration and scoring activities. The second component presents a step-by-step method for intervention which corresponds directly to the information obtained during the assessment procedure. The steps, objectives, and outcomes are clearly spelled out and contain graphics, activity pages, concept maps and curriculum-related passages to support the learning process. The graphics in this book are very pleasing and the worksheets present the information in an organized manner. A unique feature of this book is that it presents a lot of theory to support its method and that it has an accompanying CD-ROM with all the handouts ready to print.
Assessment: This is a very useful book for persons teaching reading to children. One of the most valuable aspects is that it makes the link between the assessment process and intervention planning by identifying exactly what skills to work on and how to proceed with addressing the skills. The authors do stipulate that this is a complementary method and is not to supplant any other method used to diagnose children. Although the method is clearly spelled out, practitioners must take the necessary steps to become familiar with the theoretical background supporting these materials, and to become adept at administering and scoring.