Educational Research and Reviews

  • Abbreviation: Educ. Res. Rev.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1990-3839
  • DOI: 10.5897/ERR
  • Start Year: 2006
  • Published Articles: 2008

Full Length Research Paper

Supporting young second language learners’ reading through guided reading and strategy instruction in a second grade classroom in Lebanon

Darine Chaaya1 and Irma-Kaarina Ghosn2*
  1Lebanese American University, Beirut, Lebanon. 2Lebanese American University, Byblos, Lebanon
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 17 March 2010
  •  Published: 30 June 2010



Learning to read in English still developing literacy in one’s mother tongue is a challenge facing many young English language learners (ELLs) around the world. Reading progress of six young language learners was followed in a second grade classroom in an urban English-immersion school in Lebanon. Two of the six children were identified as at-risk, not only because of their low reading levels but also, because of their negative attitudes toward reading. An individualized reading program comprising trade books (‘real books’) and homogeneous small-group instruction in specific reading strategies was implemented in the class. At the beginning of the school year, the six children observed in the study were reading at levels ranging from mid 1st grade - 3rd grade. The two lowest readers, the main focus of this paper, were reading at low first grade level. After eight months of explicit strategy instruction, children’s reading levels ranged from 2nd - 6th grade level, the two lowest readers reaching mid and high second grade levels. Children’s perceptions about reading and themselves as readers also changed considerably during the eight months. Findings have implications in contexts where young ELLs must learn school subjects in English.


Key words: Second language reading, reading strategies, guided reading, leveled books, small-group instruction, Lebanon.