How Children Learn to Read

Learning to read is a hard task for many of our students and a challenge that can follow them through their entire educational career. Fortunately, over the past couple of decades, educational researchers and cognitive scientists have made incredible leaps in understanding how it is that we as humans learn to read. Some of it confirms strongly-held beliefs among educators, and some of it contradicts what teacher preparation programs have long taught. In addition to exploring some of the key reading research, this session will also discuss decoding, phonics, cueing, whole language, dyslexia, the simple view of reading, and myths about how people learn to read. Most importantly, the hope is for participants to leave this session with specific ideas that they can implement in their classrooms right away. This session is for anyone who would like to learn more about what science and research can teach us about how we learn to read.

Target Audience



10:00 AM - 11:15 AM

This session is full.


  • Andreas Clesle

    Andreas is an elementary teacher with the Saanich School District, having earlier in his career taught in Toronto and at international schools in Colombia and Myanmar. Research shows that roughly 40% of children learn to read with somewhat ease. Andreas was not one of those kids. Those childhood experiences have led to literacy learning and instruction becoming passions for him. Most recently he has been focused on ensuring that early literacy instruction in our schools reflects the decades of cognitive science and research in this field. He is a regular presenter at regional conferences and is thrilled to be presenting at Tapestry for the third year in a row. Andreas is married to a fellow teacher, has a three-year-old daughter, 10ish-year-old dog, and still cheers for all Toronto-based sports teams, even the Leafs.