I realize that this program does work, and the kids like it. I can see a benefit starting it at the beginning with struggling and or reluctant readers. I would start readers that are only a grade level behind on the actual reading sheets. The Six-Minute Solution helped my students focus on reading for both fluency and understanding. As a grade level, we are all impressed with the data. All third grade classes have been using the Six-Minute Solution and all have seen increases with our low readers. While the numbers are not staggering, the fact that most of the kids made gains was great. This lets us believe that over time, we should be able to see increases in reading fluency and improved test scores.
One thing that was not part of the study was comprehension. We have seen an increase in comprehension with the repeated readings. This is important because the guided reading we do is over a five-day period with the same story, and almost all the work is on comprehension. We seen gains in the low performing students that we had not seen before. From day one of the second week, they read with a purpose, this increased the comprehension scores in six of the eight students.
I think if you have struggling readers, or readers that are very far behind the class, it is worth a try to use the Six-Minute Solution to improve fluency and the comprehension will be a bonus. It takes between six and ten minutes to use, and can easily be monitored while in use. The key parts of the program can be found on line for free, and there are several articles available that allow the reader to implement the program at no cost to a classroom.