How does it work?
“What you can think, you can say.
What you can say, you can write.
And what you can write, you can read.”
— Dr. Roach Van Allen, Univ. of Arizona
With traditional reading programs, students are prompted to sound out or and memorize words on a page…words that have no meaning for them or relevance to their own lives, so there is little incentive to read or understand them.
With You Read, the child is encouraged to first talk out his or her own personal stories and experiences, and then to write them, with help, in his or her own words. Because these words have personal meaning for the child, there is more immediate recognition of each word when it appears in other texts. Once this recognition begins to occur, the light goes on. The child has cracked the code, and reading happens more and more naturally. Because they can “read their world”, they can now “read the word.”
Dear Dr. Stone, I cannot recommend this program highly enough. Quite simply, it works! It gives students the chance to improve their reading skills and at the same time, develop a better feeling about themselves. My class has exhibited a 1 - 4 years reading growth. Congratulations!
Special Education Teacher, Granite Hills
How You Read was Developed
You Read is based on the work of several prominent educators and researchers, notably Dr. Paulo Friere of Brazil, who conducted over 200 studies in literacy between 1964 and 1997. Using his theory that reading could be taught using students’ own life experiences as a starting point rather than texts, he taught 450 illiterate migrant workers to read independently in just 45 hours. His ideas were echoed by Dr. Roach Van Allen of the University of Arizona, who coined the phrase, What you think you can say, what you say you can write, and what you write you can read.”
In 1981, Dr. Suki Stone synthesized this research and that of other educators into a practical step-by-step system that can be used to help any child learn to read in a natural way. By beginning with the child’s own ideas and thoughts, and encouraging self-expression through talking and then writing, words become exciting tools, instead of obstacles to overcome. The ability to read, which was always there, is finally unlocked. Progress can be so rapid as to seem miraculous.