Say you have two children who are struggling with reading, one in kindergarten and one in sixth grade. Logic would dictate that the further behind the child is, the longer it will take them to catch up, but in my experience, it takes about the same amount of time for children in various grades.
All children fall somewhere on a spectrum from left-brained dominant to right-brained dominant in how their brains are wired to learn. It will benefit both children and teachers to understand the child’s unique wiring.
In our day and age, we have become very specialized in the labels we assign our children who cannot successfully learn to read, write, and spell. For some children, one particular aspect of reading gives them more trouble, while for other kids some other part of that linear process (see above) is the sticking point.
The stakes are too high for our children to continue on in a way that is not working for the majority of learners. If we believe deep down in our hearts that children are wired to learn, our actions will follow that belief and then we will give our children their futures.
Now, over a decade later, I wouldn’t dream of teaching young kids to read without, from the beginning, involving all the strategies I have found to work for the very young and for struggling readers. You can tell which strategies each particular child needs based on what they rely on as they are reading.