© E. Ouwerkerk/BiSS

Lesen macht stark – Primary School

Based on current studies, it is known that early - but developmentally appropriate - support is particularly effective. Within the framework of Lesen macht stark, the Mercator Institute, together with the Institute for Quality Development in Schools in Schleswig-Holstein (IQSH) and the Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education at Kiel University (IPN), developed a tool for diagnosing and promoting reading and writing skills in primary school. The tool serves as an additional diagnostic aid in early teaching, in particular to identify and support children with literacy development difficulties as early as possible.

The exercises in the test booklet are divided into class exercises and individual exercises. With the help of the class exercises, primary school teachers can record the performance of students and identify those children who are likely to have difficulties with literacy development. Teachers should then conduct individual diagnostic exercises with these children. Observation notes and practical support notes for grades 1 - 4 are assigned to these tasks. The development of the diagnostic and support tool Lesen macht stark - Grundschule (Lesen macht strak – Primary School) was based on the current state of research on the acquisition of reading and writing, and in a collaboration between science and practice. This consistent integration created the basis for the development of a didactically sound tool that is readily used in practice. 

The tool was initially piloted to determine its overall applicability. It was then introduced for grades 1 and 2 at 110 schools in Schleswig-Holstein, in the 2014/15 and 2015/16 school years.

Since the 2017/ 2018 school year, Lesen macht stark has also been introduced for grades 3 and 4 at schools in Schleswig-Holstein. Starting in the 2018/19 school year, Lesen macht stark implemented a training concept that complements the diagnostic material, starting in first grade. The Mercator Institute provides scientific consultation on the development of remedial training materials and accompanies introduction in schools by researching implementation methods. In this way, the institute investigates under which conditions teachers adopt the training program and whether they use the material in accordance with the original concepts.

At a glance


Within the framework of Lesen macht stark, the Mercator Institute – in cooperation with the Institute for Quality Development in Schools in Schleswig Holstein (IQSH) – is developing material for assessing and supporting reading and writing skills in primary schools.


Institute for Quality Development at Schools in Schleswig-Holstein (IQSH)

Leibniz Institute for Science and Mathematics Education (IPN)

Prof. Dr. Jörg Jost, University of Cologne

Scientific advisor: Prof. Dr. Harmut Günther


2018 - April 2021

Project team

Dr. Stefanie Bredthauer

Dr. Kathrin Hippmann

Simone Jambor-Fahlen

Further information (in German)

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