• Translate    
  • Quick links     
Our Mission is to inspire and prepare all students to realize their potential and enhance our global community.


95 Westminster Dr.
West Hartford, CT 06107
Phone: 860-521-0110
Fax: 860-561-1492

Kristi Laverty, Principal 


Mrs. Candace Detrick

Duffy Reading Specialist


    Literacy Center programs provide direct support in several areas of literacy.  At Duffy, every child receives quality Tier 1 reading instruction in their classroom but when children need additional support, they receive additional instruction.  After 6-8 weeks of instruction,  student progress is reviewed.  The need for reading services is determined through data obtained from the AIMsweb benchmark assessments, Bedrock sight word scores and the Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA).  

    Reading services focus on one or more of the following areas:  word recognition, reading accuracy, fluency, phonics, comprehension or vocabulary.



Nancy Dorchester

Reading Teacher 

     Nancy is a certified Reading and Language Arts Consultant and Remedial Reading and Language Arts Teacher K-12. She has worked for the West Hartford Public School System since 1991. 




What is Phonics?


  • An approach to reading instruction that emphasizes letter-sound relationships and generalized principles that describe spelling-sound relationships in a language (e.g. vowels in CVCs are short).  

    • Decoding:  The ability to translate a word from print to speech, usually by employing knowledge of sound symbol correspondences; also the act of deciphering a new word by sounding it out.

  • Syllable Types: There are six syllable types:

    • 1. Closed: cat, cobweb

    • 2. Open: he, silo

    • 3. Vowel-consonant-e (VCE): like, milestone

    • 4. Consonant-l-e: candle, juggle (second syllable)

    • 5. R-controlled: star, corner

    • 6. Vowel pairs: count, rainbow

What is Word Recognition?

Word Recognition

  • The ability to recognize words quickly, accurately, and effortlessly in order to understand and enjoy what they read.  There are 4 ways that readers identify words:

    • Sight – retrieve information from memory based on prior experiences with that word

    • Decoding – sounding out letters and blending the sounds together to pronounce a word

    • Analogizing – using knowledge of a similar familiar word to identify an unknown word. For example, to read the unfamiliar word mellow, you think about how it is similar to the word yellow.

  • High Frequency Irregular Words: Words in print containing letters that stray from the most common sound pronunciation because they do not follow common phonic patterns (e.g., were, was, laugh, been).

  • High Frequency Words: A small group of words (300-500) that account for a large percentage of the words in print and can be regular or irregular words (i.e., Dolch or Fry). Often, they are referred to as “sight words” since automatic recognition of these words is required for fluent reading.

What is Vocabulary?


  • The language user's knowledge of words. “Vocabulary is the glue that holds stories, ideas and content together… making comprehension accessible for children.” (Rupley, Logan & Nichols, 1998/99).

  • Students’ word knowledge is linked strongly to academic success because students who have large vocabularies can understand new ideas and concepts readily.  

What is Fluency?


  • The ability to read text quickly, accurately, and with proper expression. Fluency provides a bridge between word recognition and comprehension. When we read fluently, we can better focus on the meaning of the text.  

  • Repeated Reading: Rereading of text until the reader is able to read at a predetermined rate to produce fluency. You might find that your child brings the same book home over several days.  This is one form of repeated reading.  

What is Comprehension?


  • Understanding what one is reading, the ultimate goal of all reading activity.

    • Comprehension Monitoring: An awareness of one’s understanding of text being read. Comprehension monitoring is part of metacognition “thinking about thinking” know what is clear and what is confusing as the reader and having the capabilities to make repairs to problems with comprehension.

    • Comprehension Questions: Address the meaning of text, ranging from literal to inferential to analytical.

    • Graphic Organizers: A visual framework or structure for capturing the main points of what is being read, which may include concepts, ideas, events, vocabulary, or generalizations. Graphic organizers are helpful tools which help students organize information prior to discussing or writing about text. The structure of a graphic organizer is determined by the structure of the kind of text being read.  




Text Types

Text Types
    • Informational Text: Non-fiction books, also referred to as expository text, that contain facts and information.

    • Narrative Text: A story about fictional or real events.


West Hartford Public Schools

50 South Main St, West Hartford, CT  06107

T: 860-561-6600

F: 860-561-6910

email page print page small type large type
powered by finalsite