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Is It Developmentally Appropriate?
In education, the term “developmentally appropriate” represents the concept that the suitability of an approach matches the approximate cognitive and behavioral stages
of a child. Today’s kindergarten students are not only different from kindergartners in the past, they are also more significantly different from each other than they
used to be. To be developmentally appropriate, a teaching approach should focus on individualized, differentiated instruction so it meets the specific needs of each
student. All students—no matter their background or prior experience with print—can and will benefit from receiving the same explicit and solid instruction detailed
in this book. According to Marie Clay (2001), about 10–20 percent of all children will seriously struggle with learning to read. Herein lies the beauty of this new way
of teaching reading in kindergarten: You can facilitate the reading development of students who are ready and, at the same time, develop the skills of those who need a
little more time and intervention.