Developing Spanish fluency: the impact on English fluency

Reading fluency is one of the five critical factors of reading instruction. These five factors were identified by the National Reading Panel (2000) as fluency, phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary, and comprehension. According to the National Reading Panel (2000) fluency has been again identified as a foundational skill necessary for children to be successful readers. In a dual language immersion program (English and Spanish), students are not just learning to read they are learning another language at the same time. The purpose of this study is to identify the impact Spanish reading fluency improvement has on English reading fluency. The study also examined the transfer of skills. How does a specific skill, such as reading fluency, taught and acquired in Spanish impact English reading fluency? Will the students with Spanish as their home language have a greater improvement in fluency than those with English as a home language? Do the growth patterns based on overall Running Records, differ between reading English and Spanish? The research in the study shows that there was a significant increase in reading fluency in both languages. The data gathered in this research study confirmed that specific skills such as reading fluency taught and acquired in Spanish will impact English reading fluency and that home language does not make a significant impact in the increase of reading fluency rate.