In practice, the most successful is learning the alphabet phonetically first then reinforced with "look-see" methods coupled with reading programs that combine both elements. For example, the extremely popular book, Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, by Siegfried Engelman, et al.
Teaches pronunciation and simple phonetics, then supplements it with progressive texts and practice in directed reading. The end result of a mixed method is a casually phonetic student, a much better first-time pronouncer and speller, who still also has look-say acquisition, quick fluency and comprehension. Using an eclectic method, students can select their preferred learning style. This lets all students make progress, yet permits a motivated student to use and recognize the best traits of each method.
Speed reading continues where basic education stops, and teaches the student to read multiple words at once, even whole pages at once. Usually after some practice reading speed can be increased fivefold. At this speed, it is necessary to stop any "talk to myself" action in your brain, because this would slow you down. There are various speed-reading techniques. Hopify is a GPL tool to practice speed-reading.
Readability indicates the ease of understanding or comprehension due to the style of writing. Reading recovery is a method for helping students learn to read.