About Reading Recovery®

Reading Recovery® is a short-term intervention program developed by New Zealand educator and researcher, Marie M. Clay. The early literacy intervention is designed for children who are at risk in literacy learning by the end of their first year at school. Once struggling readers are identified, implementing the Reading Recovery® program as early as possible can help students reach grade-level standard. Strong literacy teaching benefits the entire school.

To teach struggling beginning readers, we need to understand them as readers. Marie Clay developed running records to more accurately assess a child’s reading level. Running records provide educators with an opportunity to analyze what’s happening when a student reads and how well that student is using the reading strategies they’re being taught in class. The teacher is then able to plan appropriate follow-up instruction and select helpful texts for reading practice. Running records can also help teachers decide when a student is ready to advance to the next reading level. Each MaryRuth Books title has a corresponding running record available as a free download on the individual title, or book set, product page.

How Reading Recovery® Works

Schools that have a Reading Recovery® program will have teachers on staff who are specially trained in Reading Recovery®. Students meet on their own with a certified Reading Recovery® teacher for 30 minutes every school day for a period of 12-20 weeks.

The one-to-one instruction enables the teacher to identify each student’s strengths and weaknesses. Sessions are discontinued once the student demonstrates that he/she is able to work independently in the classroom and use skills that correspond with their grade level. Progress as a whole is measured by the Observation Survey of Early Literacy Achievement.

Success of Reading Recovery®

Reading Recovery® was founded in New Zealand and has since been implemented in the United States, Canada, Australia, and the United Kingdom.

According to Reading Recovery Works, approximately 72% of students who receive Reading Recovery® intervention are able to read at grade level upon completion of the program. Of those students, 99% do not require a referral for special education.

Shop Reading Recovery® Books at MaryRuth Books

MaryRuth Books offers a list of books approved for Reading Recovery®. Shop our books online today to get your reader started on the path to success!


Fountas, Irene C. and Pinnell, Gay Su. Guided Reading- Good First Teaching for All Children. Heinemann, 1996.
Reading Recovery® Council of North America. https://readingrecovery.org/reading-recovery