BOSTON, July 17, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Global learning company Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has partnered with King-Devick technologies, inc. to bring the King-Devick Reading Acceleration Program (K-D RAP), a new, proven-effective approach to strengthening literacy skills by teaching the physical act of reading, to students in elementary classrooms. HMH will market, sell and distribute K-D RAP to schools nationwide, while King-Devick technologies' (KDT) specialists will provide educators with product training and technical support.
K-D RAP is an in-school, web-based system that allows students to practice accurate and efficient eye movements that often are not fully developed when students learn to read. The student's task is to read aloud dynamically presented single-digit number targets quickly while speed settings are adjusted and increased with ongoing practice.
KDT is also home to the King-Devick Test in association with Mayo Clinic, the well-known sideline concussion screening test, and KDT is the only company in Mayo Clinic's 150 year history with which the Clinic has co-branded.
Peer-reviewed studies have shown that K-D RAP provides simple in-school eye movement practice that significantly improves oral reading fluency and comprehension with elementary students. More notably, K-D RAP provides the greatest benefits to students who need it the most. In as little as six weeks, below-level students who completed K-D RAP increased from the 26th to 40th national percentile rank in reading fluency and from the 40th to the 56th percentile rank in reading comprehension, in a study published in January this year by the Journal of Child Neurology.
"Efficient and accurate eye movements required for reading are learned motor skills that, like other complex motor skills, take practice and develop with age," says Jennifer Wethe, Ph.D., Mayo Clinic neuropsychologist. "Currently we assume that students can execute this complex task when they are first learning how to read, but many students benefit from being taught how to move their eyes more efficiently."
"We are very excited to team up with KDT and to add K-D RAP to our portfolio – it is an excellent match," says Tracey Barrett, Vice President, Product Management, Assessment, HMH. "We are committed to providing educators with cutting-edge tools that produce positive outcomes and help learners find the joy in academic growth. We feel confident that the gains supported by K-D RAP allow early learners to unlock the power of reading, providing a foundation for years to come."
"Reading requires a number of higher cortical functions but it also involves the physical act of moving your eyes on a page from left to right which is something we are not currently teaching early learners in school," says Amaal Starling, M.D., Mayo Clinic neurologist. "We teach students the physical act of writing by building fine motor skills of the hands, why are we not teaching the physical act of reading by building fine motor skills of eye movement. By teaching students the physical act of reading during this critical learning period between first through fourth grades, we can make a huge impact in education."
The King-Devick Reading Acceleration Program will be available for back to school 2017.
About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (NASDAQ: HMHC) is a global learning company dedicated to changing people's lives by fostering passionate, curious learners. As a leading provider of pre-K–12 education content, services, and cutting-edge technology solutions across a variety of media, HMH enables learning in a changing landscape. HMH is uniquely positioned to create engaging and effective educational content and experiences from early childhood to beyond the classroom. HMH serves more than 50 million students in over 150 countries worldwide, while its award-winning children's books, novels, non-fiction, and reference titles are enjoyed by readers throughout the world. For more information, visit www.hmhco.com.
About King-Devick technologies, inc.
King-Devick technologies, inc. offers a broad set of evidenced-based solutions utilizing integrated technology for concussion management, reading performance, and as indicators of neurological function. King-Devick products have been scientifically validated in more than 90 recent peer reviewed articles published in elite journals. In 2015, Mayo Clinic and King-Devick Test announced a licensing agreement for the sideline concussion test – now recognized as the King-Devick Test in association with Mayo Clinic. For more information, please visit: www.kingdevicktest.com.
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SOURCE Houghton Mifflin Harcourt