It helps accelerate student achievement in reading, giving them opportunities to improve their self-esteem. It also encourages on-task behavior and student participation since it allows students more opportunities to do so since they are paired in dyads and not have to content with competing within a whole group. Most of all, it is enjoyable for children and very motivating for them because of the collaboration they maintain towards particular tasks. In doing so, it forges positive social interaction between students.
PALS enhances the reading skills of all children but it targets specific age-appropriate skills in each level. Kindergarten children learn phonological awareness and the decoding and recognition of words. First grade students build on the skills learned from Kindergarten and in addition, they learn to decode and comprehend text and to read more fluently. Tapping such skills helps the students perform better on standardized and informal reading tests.
The teacher ranks the students based on their reading performance. Usually, the Rapid Letter Naming (RLN) test is used to measure letter recognition and future reading performance. However, grouping for Kindergarten and First grade differs. For Kindergarten, the teacher pairs the highest-performing student with the lowest-performing student. Pairing follows the order from there with the next highest-performing student with the next lowest-performing student and so on until all the students have been paired. With First Graders, the teachers divides the rank-order list in half then pairs the top high-performing student with the top low-performing student and the process continues till all the students have found their match. This kind of pairing may include children with disabilities in the pairing so it is highly possible that a low-performing student with disability is paired with a high-performing student