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Children who attended the University of Missouri Child Study Clinic had an opportunity to participate in a program of reading instruction based upon a theory of the reading process developed by Kenneth S. Goodman. Goodman viewed reading as a meaning seeking process which has two characteristics. One is that the reader is attempting to get at meaning. The second is that he or she is using whole language to do so (Brenner, 1976). This whole-language comprehension-centered approach to the teaching of reading is rooted in the belief that children learn to read in as natural a way as they learn to speak.

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