Books, materials, and trained teachers are often in short supply in low-resource countries. In response, EDC developed Read Right Now! (RRN!), an evidence-based literacy program that provides a blueprint for ministries of education, educators, and parents to support the development of skilled readers and writers in diverse contexts.
RRN! is adaptable to a country’s specific needs and focuses on four key instructional elements—oral language development, explicit literacy skills instruction, authentic reading, and authentic writing—within a critical and strategic thinking framework. This approach helps children to tackle letters, syllables, and words as a system and to learn to think about whether or not what they are reading and writing makes sense. Whether students are early grade learners or out-of-school youth, RRN! is rich in content and instructional guidance and simple for teachers to use.
Activities of the RRN! program include the following:
- Support curricular enhancements and instructional practice changes to improve fluency, comprehension, and vocabulary while instilling an appreciation for reading and an understanding of language structures
- Provide resources and technical support on topics such as policy negotiation, standard setting, teaching and learning materials development, teacher training and coaching, student and teacher assessment, and community engagement
- Provide effective information communication technology tools for mediating instruction, teacher support, and assessment
- In the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), 21 percent of second-grade students using the program surpassed third-grade French fluency benchmarks, compared to 2 percent of students in other schools. Program students outscored peers even more in first-grade Lingala reading.
- After one year of robust support, teachers in the DRC were able to apply the instructional routines and effectively use the materials at their disposal on their own and with the support of their peers. *
- After a year and half, Senegal students averaged fluency rates of 81 words correct per minute and 95 percent comprehension.
- In the Philippines, students’ average gain in comprehension after a year of using the program was 24 percent, and 62 percent of participating students met fluency benchmarks (compared to only 45 percent of non-participating students).
- In Madagascar, 96 percent of teachers were observed using evidence-based, student-centered instructional strategies after one year of program support, compared with 56 percent at the start of the program.
- In Ghana, parents who reported reading to their children increased from 42 percent to 70 percent over the course of the program.