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Our Approach to Program Design


The Wilson principles of instruction are key to our programs’ success.

A Foundation for Learning

By employing Wilson’s evidence-based instructional models, school districts, reading centers, and tutors can build a powerful literacy action plan or sustainability plan that builds a solid foundation for beginning learners, closes the reading gap for struggling students, teaches students with dyslexia how to read and write, and meets your state’s rigorous college- and career-ready standards.

The same effective principles of instruction found to increase student achievement are incorporated into all Wilson programs and are key to their success.

Prevention and Intervention Within an MTSS and RTI Framework

Wilson’s three strategically designed curricula and their associated professional learning opportunities fit within both an Multi-tiered System of Supports (MTSS) and RTI framework to provide prevention-based general instruction and intervention support for students across three tiers of instruction.

While the programs are designed to be implemented together and work synergistically as part of a school or district’s MTSS or RTI framework, each program can also be used on its own as an effective supplemental or intervention program to meet the specific needs of your students.

The integration of assessments allows Wilson programs to be used as a mechanism for identifying students in need of special education services in reading and spelling. The programs work together to ensure that all students become successful readers. Together, they cover the three tiers of instruction as follows:

  • Tier 1: Fundations® (Grades K–3)
  • Tier 2: Fundations (Grades K–3) or Just Words® (Grades 4–12 and adults)
  • Tier 3: Wilson Reading System® (Grades 2–12 and adults)

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To support educator and student learning within an MTSS or RTI framework, Wilson offers extensive Professional Learning opportunities for teachers.  

Key Instructional Principles

Incorporated into all of Wilson’s programs are principles of effective instruction identified by research to increase student achievement, and are key to our success.

Meeting Social Content Standards

Fundations, Just Words, Wilson Reading System, and Wilson Fluency®/Basic have been approved by the California State Board of Education as meeting the state’s social content standards. This means that the materials contained in each of Wilson’s programs:

  • Portray the cultural and racial diversity of American society accurately and equitably.
  • Demonstrate the contribution of minority groups, males, and females to the development of California and the United States.
  • Depict people in varied, positive, and contributing roles to enrich students’ school experiences.
  • Avoid inappropriate references to commercial brand names, products, and corporate or company logos.

Research Base

Scientific evidence reveals that reading is the intersection of five critical components: phonemic awareness and phonics (also referred to as alphabetics), fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.