Everything you Need for a Quality
Reading Program

Courses and Resources

Who Doesn't Want Better Reading Results!

SharpReading is a collection of well researched, tried and tested training courses and teacher resources aimed at delivering quality classroom reading programs for beginning to advanced readers.  Our focus is on teaching levelled reading groups, commonly referred to as guided reading. 

 Whether you are a beginning teacher looking for routines to get you going, an experienced teacher looking to rejuvenate your teaching of reading, or a principal or literacy leader looking for school-wide consistency, you will find solutions here.

Our 20 plus years of training knowledge and expertise will provide you with everything you need to run a reading program that boosts student engagement and significantly raises student achievement in reading. 

CLICK HERE to see the impact that SharpReading has had on schools!

Boost Classroom Reading by Completing our Courses

Upskill and improve your teaching of reading.
Our step by step methods make it easy for you to learn quickly.


1. Select a Course

Choose the training course that will best boost your reading program.

  • Guided Reading Courses in Decoding and Comprehension
  • Specialist Courses like Phonics or the Struggling Older Reader

2. Consider Learning Options

Choose your preferred learning method

3. Get started

Ready to go? Do one of the following

Congratulations. You are on your way.


Teaching Reading to the Beginner Reader - Stages 1&2 
Our 5 Steps guided reading routine makes it possible to teach five reading groups a day. If you only have 10-12 minutes for each group then what you do in that 10-12 minutes is crucial. 

Move your students quickly towards decoding fluency with clearly selected strategy practice that builds competence and success.

A junior teacher teaching beginner readers in a reading group

Teaching Reading Comprehension - Stage 3
This course utilises a thinking approach to the teaching of comprehension. Good comprehension skills are developed when a group of readers learn how to think about and process text WHILE reading as opposed to answering questions after reading.

Teaching comprehension, our Stage 3, hands you a guided reading routine that makes this happen. Students are forced to thoughtfully unpack sentences, activating their brains and bringing text alive. Students are motivated to read and empowered when given licence to do this.

A teacher teaching reading comprehension to a small reading group

Teaching Reading for Critical Thinking - Stages 4&5
Stages 4 and 5 aim to develop additional flexibility of thinking, training the brain to consider and sort through a range of possibilities while reading. This group reading process builds on the thinking that has been developed in Stage 3. 

Stages 4 captures the magic of reading, pushing the reader to 'experience' language. Stage 5 moves them into holding onto the big picture of the text and being able to provide quick summaries of the content while they are reading. 

A teacher teaching reading for critical thinking to a group of readers in a classroom

What is Guided Reading?

Teaching reading in a small, levelled group is a perfect way for the teacher to focus on each students needs and accelerate their progress.

SharpPhonics ONLiNE Course
Junior classroom teachers need a phonics program but for many of us this can be a daunting prospect. SharpPhonics is a collaboration with New Zealand Phonics Specialist, Yolanda Soryl, to bring you a very accessible starting approach to teaching phonics.  

All teaching resources are included - flash cards, letter cards, teacher scripts.

Yolanda Soryl teaching phonics to a small beginner reader group

The Struggling Older Reader ONLiNE Course
For those older readers who get stuck on decoding and keep falling further behind, our 8-10 week intervention (SevenPlus) will get them over the decoding hump and we then transition them back into a normal guided reading process. 

Testing and instructional text for SevenPlus are included.

An older reader struggling to read a book while sitting in a library

SharpReading for Teacher Aides
This is training for support teachers or teacher aides who work with individual or small groups of students who need extra support with their reading. This PD gives specific direction on WHAT to teach for varying levels of ability (Yrs 1-5) and HOW to teach students using our routines, our management techniques and how to record each lesson to support the classroom teacher.

An older reader struggling to read a book while sitting in a library

"This training model and the supporting resources work for me. The courses are very comprehensive and easy to follow. Having the video modelling to refer back to is a game changer. I have seen teachers quickly turn around their reading programs and get great student motivation and success."

Karen Blackall - RTLB, Auckland


An icon of a person sitting at a computer choosing which reading course they wish to do

Online Courses

Start Teacher Training Now

  • Instant access - at your own pace
  • Transfer new learning straight into the classroom. 
  • Everything you need - video modeling, scripts, printable templates and resources
An icon of  a person standing in front of a class to indicate whether you would prefer to do a workshop or a webinar

Webinars and Workshops

Face-to-Face Interaction

  • An event to get you started
  • Get immersed quickly

Start-Up Webinars for all courses are held twice a term (Half Day)
Start-Up Workshops
in NZ, Australia, Hong Kong and Shanghai (Whole Day)

An icon of a school and indicate that you can have our consultants come into your school to do our training

On-Site Training

Everyone Training Together

Customised School-Wide Plans with clear direction for all levels

  • Start-Up Workshops (TOD)
  • In-class support with the expert
  • Develop in-school coaches

Levelled Stories to Engage your Students

Stories with a twist and non fiction packed with fascinating facts
means your students always come back for more.

StoryBytes (fiction) and InfoBytes (non-fiction)

  • Each text is 4 paragraphs, approximately 400 words. 
  • PDF files and powerpoints for whole class lessons. 
  • 5 levels of difficulty - Reading Ages 7-8 yrs to RA 14+ yrs
  • Include follow-up activities

Short Stories and Non Fiction

  • Each text 600-800 words, 1 page, Reading Ages 7-16+
  • Extensive follow-up activities (Bloom's Taxonomy)

Chapter Books

  • Two levels of difficulty - RA 8-9 yrs and 12-13 yr
  • Whole class read-aloud or for guided reading

NZ School Journals

  • Activities for NZ School Journal stories and articles
Students doing after reading activities that come with SharpReading stories, storybytes and infobytes

"Thanks SharpReading. These resources are a teacher's lifesaver AND the kids love them." 

Trish - Year 5 Teacher

Assess Your Students to Meet their Needs

Good Reading Assessment is the Key to Good Progress

Reading Tests - Informal Prose Inventories
A testing procedure for reading ages 6-15 yrs. Establish reading benchmarks to measure progress. Guide your teaching by identifying decoding and comprehension strategy strengths and weaknesses.

Informal Prose Inventory ONLiNE
A free training course to ensure you get the implementation and the analysis of this testing procedure right.

"I have used your reading assessment tests for years. Haven't found anything to replace them. They give me the data I need on the kids especially the weak comprehenders." 

Tim - Year 6 Teacher

A Well Researched Reading Program

Our action research meant 100s of classroom trials and consultations with teachers and experts.  Our courses are the foundation training of beginning teachers at the highly successful New Zealand Graduate School of Education (NZGSE).


The New Zealand Graduate School of Education, Christchurch (NZGSE) is where SharpReading originated. A quality teacher training provider, NZGSE's reading program was initially developed by Hilton Ayrey (now SharpReading Director) back in 2000.  Its goal was to meet the needs of the beginning teachers who required an easy to learn, well defined reading approach.

Ten years later, after Brian Parker (SharpReading Director) had joined the NZGSE team, the SharpReading program had been rigorously trialed and tested with 1000s of students in classrooms.

Michael Pressley

Michael Pressley's research over a lifetime has been the backbone of our theoretical understanding of how children learn to read. 

Pressely's insight into 'A Balanced Approach to Teaching Reading' drawn from methodical research of many methods, reinforced our instincts; to be clear, ensure student success and avoid student overload.

“In general, the conscious processing that is excellent reading begins before reading, continues during reading, and persists after reading.”  - Pressley

Working with Teachers in Australia

Working with Teachers in Australia


Working with many teachers, beginners and experienced, in different countries, as well as literacy specialists and reading experts like Yolanda Soryl, has reinforced what we already knew, that there are many ways to teach reading, and no one way that will suit all students let alone individual teaching styles.  

However, 20 years of listening, teaching, reflecting and evaluating means we are very confident that what we offer bridges many of those differences and provides something that is simple, efficient, manageable and most importantly, highly motivating for learners.

Your SharpReading Directors

Hilton Ayrey

Hilton Ayrey is a director of SharpReading

Hilton and Brian have between them spent decades as classroom teachers, always looking for ways to hone their craft as teachers. They met as tutors at NZGSE and collaborated on developing an approach to reading instruction for the beginning teachers they were training.

Since 2010 they have worked as independent consultants in schools in NZ , Australia, Hong Kong and China, and overseen the training of hundreds of teachers world-wide via their ONLiNE teacher Training Courses.

Brian Parker

Brian Parker is a director of SharpReading

"While there are many ways to teach, in this age of information overload, we must be practical and efficient ... SHARP!"

Join our SharpReading Network

Fill in your details in the sign up form to keep in touch as we continue to look for ways to SHARPEN reading programs so that reading instruction is meaningful and manageable.


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