Keys to Beginning Reading

Professional Development Offering

Keys to Beginning Reading:

Evidence-Based Professional Development Course

Would you like to learn evidence-based instructional practices for teaching foundational reading skills that are aligned with the science of reading? The professional development modules in this course are just what you need!

This practical course provides the background knowledge needed to teach all the components of beginning reading instruction. The instructional practices are designed to easily transfer to classroom lessons and can be integrated with any reading curriculum or published reading program. The course is tightly aligned with state literacy standards.

Download an informational flyer that includes the course outline.

Who should participate?

This course is designed for any educator who teaches basic reading skills to students in grades K-3 or students in upper elementary grades who struggle with basic reading skills. It is also appropriate for literacy coaches and administrators who develop beginning reading curriculum or support teachers.

Course Content

The course is organized into 11 modules covering these topics (with training time noted):

  • Module 1: Reading Basics (1.5 hrs)
  • Module 2: Oral Language (1.5 hrs)
  • Module 3: Phonological Awareness (3 hrs)
  • Module 4: Phonics (7.5 hrs)
  • Module 5: Fluency (3 hrs)
  • Module 6: Vocabulary (6 hrs)
  • Module 7: Sentence Structure (1.5 hrs)
  • Module 8: Text Structure (1.5 hrs)
  • Module 9: Comprehension (6 hrs)
  • Module 10: Students with Reading Difficulties (2 hrs)
  • Module 11: Reading Assessment (2 hrs)

Multiple Options for Accessing Keys to Beginning Reading 

Option 1: Live Training 

Participate in live training delivered by Keys to Literacy trainers using a virtual-live format (using Zoom meeting software) or onsite at your school district. We will develop a customized professional development plan to provide training for some or all of the modules following a flexible schedule. Optional “connect to the classroom” implementation coaching is available. Contact us to learn more.

Option 2: Online Course 

A companion Keys to Beginning Reading online course is available that is organized into 11 modules that cover the same content as live training and is aligned to the Keys to Beginning Reading training manual. The full course takes approximately 36 hours to complete. It is an asynchronous course, which means users can log on and off multiple times to complete the course assignments at their own pace. Individual educators can register to take the course, or schools can register groups. The course registration fee includes a copy of the training manual. Contact us to learn more, or register for the course at the Keys to Literacy store.

Option 3: Hybrid-Online Facilitated Course

This hybrid-online facilitated option is for educators who would like to complete the online course and also participate in live, debrief sessions facilitated by a Keys to Literacy trainer. These sessions provide a collaborative opportunity to debrief activities completed during online modules, share ideas for connecting course content to classroom instruction, and have the facilitator answer questions and clarify online course content. In addition to the time spent taking the asynchronous course, there are 12 hours of facilitated sessions that are scheduled following a flexible schedule that meets the needs of your school district. We will develop a customized professional development plan to provide training for some or all of the modules following a flexible schedule. Click here for a flyer about the hybrid-online option. Contact us to learn more, including details about our Train-the-Facilitator option for schools that would like to offer the hybrid-online course using in-house facilitators.

Keys to Literacy Events Open to the Public

Check the Keys to Literacy events page to find upcoming Keys to Beginning Reading training events. These are open to the public and are a great way for individual educators to access the training!

Train-the-Facilitator Option

If your school district or educational organization is interested in training staff educators to become certified Keys to Beginning Reading facilitators for the hybrid-online course, please contact us for details.

International Dyslexia Association Accredited Teacher Training Program

Keys to Beginning Reading is an accredited teacher training program by the International Dyslexia Association (IDA). Educators seeking to prepare to earn IDA’s CERI certification and take the KPEERI exam have a choice of completing Keys to Beginning Reading in the all-live format or facilitated online format. Additional readings and related assignments are required, and there is a supplemental fee. Please note that educators who complete Keys to Beginning Reading professional development do not automatically become IDA CERI certified – they must be registered for a CERI designated version of the course, and complete the CERI certification process with IDA.   Click here for details.

State Approved Versions

Arizona DOE Approved Version for Dyslexia Designee Training

A customized version of Keys to Beginning Reading has been approved to meet the requirements for the Reading Instruction (I) and Intensifying Instruction (II) portions of dyslexia designee training. The Understanding Dyslexia (RD) portion of dyslexia designee is covered in our Understanding Dyslexia course. Click here for more details, or contact us.

Colorado CDE Approved Version

A customized, 45.5 hour version of Keys to Beginning Reading has been approved to meet the Colorado Read Act requirement of evidence-based PD for K-3 teachers.  It was also selected as the course that CDE staff will be offering free to districts. Click here for more details, or contact us.

Kentucky KDE Approved for Read to Achieve

Keys to Beginning Reading meets all four key areas (1. understanding the cognitive processes and skills involved in learning how to read, 2. essential components of reading, 3. aligned to KAS for Reading and Writing, 4. reading-writing connection). Click here for more details.

Louisiana DOE Approved Version for Louisiana Literacy Foundations Training

A customized 52 hour version of Keys to Beginning Reading has been approved to meet the LDOE Act 108 requirement of science of reading PD for K-3 educators. Click here for more details.

Ohio DOE Approved Version for Dyslexia Support Laws Requirement

Are you looking to complete a professional development course that meets the Ohio Dyslexia Support Laws requirements for all K-3 teachers, as well as intervention specialist K-12?  The Keys to Beginning Reading course is an approved course! Click here for more details, or contact us.

Oregon DOE Approved Version for Dyslexia Training Requirement

A customized version of Keys to Beginning Reading has been approved to meet the requirements for Using Evidence Based Practice to Teach Foundational Reading Skills as well as Intensifying Instruction for dyslexia training. Click here for more details, or contact us.

Micro-Credentials Through Drexel University

Educators who successfully complete any version of the Keys to Beginning Reading course are eligible to acquire a Foundations of Literacy Acquisition micro-credential from Drexel University. Click here to learn more.

Contact Keys to Literacy today to learn more about Letterland!

Contact Us to Get Started


We are closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation and the impact on our employees and the schools where we provide professional development.

During this time period when onsite, face-to-face training and coaching is not possible, we offer multiple options for accessing our literacy PD content and instructional practices.

If you are a current or new partner, explore our website or contact us to learn more about: