UFLI Foundations Toolkit

We look forward to introducing the UFLI Foundations Toolkit from Infants to Second Class next year. This new programme is currently experiencing a lot of success worldwide. Like the Heggerty programme it is evidence based and was heavily researched before implementation in classrooms around the world.


UFLI is an explicit and systematic programme that teaches students the foundational skills necessary for proficient reading. It follows a carefully developed scope and sequence designed to ensure that students systematically acquire each skill needed and learn to apply each skill with automaticity and confidence. The program is designed to be used for core instruction in the primary classroom or for intervention with struggling students in any year group.

The work of UFLI is deeply rooted in the science of reading. The term “science of reading” refers to the research that reading experts have conducted on how we learn to read. This body of knowledge, including research from the fields of education, linguistics, cognitive psychology, and neuroscience, has formed the basis of what we know to comprise effective reading instruction in that it is explicit, systematic, and offer many opportunities to respond.


How does it work?

UFLI Foundations provides teachers with detailed lesson plans that all follow this eight-step routine:  


  1. Phonemic Awareness
  2. Visual Drill
  3. Auditory Drill
  4. Blending Drill
  5. New Concept
  6. Word Work
  7. Irregular Words
  8. Connected Text


Steps 1 through 4 serve as a warm-up and review of previously taught concepts.  Step 5 is an explicit introduction to a new concept including guided practice reading and spelling words. Steps 6 through 8 are opportunities to apply concepts through reading and writing activities at the word and text level. 


What specific skills are targeted in the program?

UFLI Foundations targets the following foundational reading skills: 

  • Phoneme blending and segmentation practice 
  • Accuracy and automaticity of grapheme-phoneme correspondences
  • Decoding automaticity of words with previously learned concepts
  • Explicit introduction of new concepts
  • Decoding and encoding practice 
  • Reading and spelling irregular words 
  • Reading and spelling connected text


What is special about UFLI Foundations?

UFLI Foundations strikes the perfect balance between structure and responsiveness to students’ needs. The program features ample opportunities for students to practice, along with built-in gradual release. It provides teachers with detailed lesson plans, a PowerPoint slide deck to accompany each lesson, and downloadable materials for homework or center activities. 

UFLI Foundations is an example of an educative curriculum. This means that simply using the materials and lesson structure will add to your professional knowledge and skills in key areas:  

  • The process of reading acquisition 
  • Key linguistic elements necessary for reading 
  • Evidence-based instructional methods that promote reading proficiency 


Is UFLI Foundations research-based? Is UFLI Foundations evidence-based?

UFLI Foundations is both evidence-based and research-based. This means it was developed to align with what decades of reading research has shown to be effective. We incorporated findings from research on word reading development and effective instruction to build an explicit and systematic program for teaching children to read and spell words.


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