About the TRI

The Targeted Reading Intervention (TRI) professional development program is designed to help kindergarten and first grade teachers in rural, low-wealth schools provide reading instruction for the children in their classrooms who are struggling in learning how to read. University-based literacy coaches provide one-on-one, ongoing support to classroom teachers in multiple states via inexpensive and scalable webcam technology.  We began as part of the National Research Center on Rural Education Support, and now continue this research project at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill through funding from the Institute of Education Sciences in the U.S. Department of Education.

The TRI professional development process helps teachers:

  • acquire essential knowledge of early reading development and efficient instructional strategies
  • develop skills in matching instruction to informal assessment
  • apply their learning particularly for the benefit of struggling readers

TRI Teachers work with their struggling readers intensively on a daily basis for about 15 minutes, initially one-on-one and eventually transitioning to very small groups.  TRI teachers use diagnostic, evidence-based reading strategies and refine those strategies daily to meet the needs of their struggling readers.  TRI Coaches observe TRI lessons weekly via webcam; immediately following the lesson, coaches facilitate a quick conversation with the teacher about the student’s most pressing literacy need.  The TRI is both effective and efficient because the strategies integrate multiple, essential early reading abilities in the context of real words and books, and because ongoing coaching enhances a teacher’s diagnostic thinking.