The purpose of this action research project was to determine if research-based early literacy interventions are more effective than teacher-created early literacy interventions with special education students on letter identification and letter sound recognition. Before the interventions began the students were given the Foundational Skills Survey in Letter Identification and Letter Sound Recognition by Really Great Reading. This score was the baseline for the reported data. For eight weeks the researcher instructed the students using a research-based reading intervention from Really Great Reading's Countdown focused on letter identification and letter sound recognition. This was done in addition to the general classroom instruction in those two areas. Another teacher instructed special education students on letter identification and letter sound recognition using a teacher-created intervention. This was done in addition to the general classroom instruction in letter identification and letter sound recognition. Data was collected through end-of-the-week assessments over letters and sounds. A post-test was given to determine the total number of upper and lower case letters that the students could identify and the total number of letter sounds the students could produce.