IES What Works Clearinghouse Practice Guides

The What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) at the Institute for Education Sciences (IES) publishes practice guides. A practice guide is a publication that presents recommendations for educators to address challenges in their classrooms and schools. They are based on reviews of research, the experiences of practitioners, and the expert opinions of a panel of nationally recognized experts. This page highlights the practice guides focused on language and literacy.

WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
WWC guide cover
 

Click on the practice guide title to view the entire practice guide. Click on the arrow to expand and review its recommendations. Many recommendations include videos of instructional examples in the classroom.

Preparing Young Children for School

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This‚ÄĮpractice guide, developed in conjunction with an expert‚ÄĮpanel, distills contemporary early childhood and preschool education research into seven easily comprehensible and practical‚ÄĮrecommendations. The guidance will help to prepare young children to benefit from the learning opportunities they will encounter in school.
 

Foundational Skills to Support Reading for Understanding in Kindergarten Through 3rd Grade

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This practice guide provides four recommendations for teaching foundational reading skills to students in kindergarten through 3rd grade. Each recommendation includes implementation steps and solutions for common obstacles. The recommendations also summarize and rate supporting evidence. This guide is geared towards teachers, administrators, and other educators who want to improve their students’ foundational reading skills, and is a companion to the practice guide, Improving Reading Comprehension in Kindergarten Through 3rd Grade.
 

Improving Reading Comprehension in Kindergarten Through 3rd Grade

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Students who read with understanding at an early age gain access to a broader range of texts, knowledge, and educational opportunities, making early reading comprehension instruction particularly critical. This guide recommends five specific steps that teachers, reading coaches, and principals can take to successfully improve reading comprehension for young readers.
 

Assisting Students Struggling with Reading: Response to Intervention (RtI) and Multi-Tier Intervention in the Primary Grades

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This guide offers five specific recommendations to help educators identify struggling readers and implement evidence-based strategies to promote their reading achievement. Teachers and reading specialists can utilize these strategies to implement RtI and multi-tier intervention methods and frameworks at the classroom or school level. Recommendations cover how to screen students for reading problems, design a multi-tier intervention program, adjust instruction to help struggling readers, and monitor student progress.
 

Effective Literacy and English Language Instruction for English Learners in the Elementary Grades

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This Educator's Practice Guide has been updated. In April 2014, the WWC published Teaching Academic Content and Literacy to English Learners in Elementary and Middle School, which was updated to correspond with the focus in the field on improving academic vocabulary, writing, and content-area learning of English learners at both the elementary and middle grades.
 

Teaching Academic Content and Literacy to English Learners in Elementary and Middle School

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This practice guide provides four recommendations that address what works for English learners during reading and content area instruction. Each recommendation includes extensive examples of activities that can be used to support students as they build the language and literacy skills needed to be successful in school, including examples of how the recommendations align with Common Core and other contemporary state standards. The recommendations also summarize and rate supporting evidence. This guide is geared toward teachers, administrators, and other educators who want to improve instruction in academic content and literacy for English learners in elementary and middle school.
 

Teaching Elementary School Students to Be Effective Writers

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This practice guide provides four recommendations for improving elementary students’ writing. Each recommendation includes implementation steps and solutions for common roadblocks. The recommendations also summarize and rate supporting evidence. This guide is geared toward teachers, literacy coaches, and other educators who want to improve the writing of their elementary students.
 

Providing Reading Interventions for Students in Grades 4-9

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This practice guide provides four evidence-based recommendations that teachers can use to deliver reading interventions to meet the needs of their students.
 

Improving Adolescent Literacy: Effective Classroom and Intervention Practices

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This guide presents strategies that classroom teachers and specialists can use to increase the reading ability of adolescent students. The recommendations aim to help students gain more from their reading tasks, improve their motivation for and engagement in the learning process, and assist struggling readers who may need intensive and individualized attention.
 

Teaching Secondary Students to Write Effectively

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This practice guide presents three evidence-based recommendations for helping students in grades 6‚Äď12 develop effective writing skills. Each recommendation includes specific, actionable guidance for educators on implementing practices in their classrooms. The guide also summarizes and rates the evidence supporting each recommendation, describes examples to use in class, and offers the panel‚Äôs advice on how to overcome potential implementation obstacles. This guide is geared towards administrators and teachers in all disciplines who want to help improve their students‚Äô writing.