Comprehension: Homonyms, riddles and world play

with Dr. Marcy Zipke

  • Elementary and Special Education at Providence College in Rhode Island
  • Received both her Ph.D. and master's degrees in Educational Psychology
  • Emphasis on effective reading comprehension instruction, teacher education, and linguistic knowledge

About the Podcast

  • Became very interested in "knock, knock" jokes at a young age
  • Metalinguistics (or the ability to manipulate language) became a main focus in determining whether or not it affects comprehension.
Examples of Metalinguistics:
  1. "The man's nails were sharp." Two meanings: 1. nail as in a nail and hammer, 2. nail as in nails on a hand.
  2. "The girl tickled the baby with the stuffed bear." Who's holding the bear?

Educators, Parents and Policy Makers...Oh my!

A general rule for everyone:
  • Teach how homonyms work then have students write and read their own riddles...do they make sense? If not, provide scaffolding.
  • Make it FUN for them yet SIMPLE - it doesn't need to be a huge part of the lesson.
  • Focus more on 3rd grade students and up - younger students don't quite understand.

Source: www.voiceofliteracy.org/posts/35281