IDEA 2004 identified eight areas as the basis for determining if a student has a specific learning disability. Six of the areas deal with language arts: oral expression, listening comprehension, written expression, basic reading skills, fluency, and reading comprehension. As a result of the IDEA 2004 mandate, Response to Intervention has become the way to determine if students have special needs. This chapter explains RTI as it relates to literacy and its cycle of instruction, assessment, intervention, assessment, and increasingly intense intervention if necessary.

As with any good instruction, teachers differentiate instruction through content, process, product, and learning styles. Some students need extra time to understand and develop skills, while other students need to be given advanced tasks. IDEA 2004 requires that schools identify gifted and talented students as well as low-performing students for the purpose of providing them instruction that meets their needs.

Tutoring has long been a successful way to provide individual students with the instruction they need. Tutoring lesson plans are shared in this chapter. The “Tutoring and Technology” section explains how videoconferencing can be used during tutoring sessions.