Ms. Buckingham's Classroom News

Reading Beyond the Primary Grades

Literacy goals for my students:

In the primary grades, the students learned automaticity and fluency, so now that they are in the intermediate grades, we're shifting gears to focus on text ideas and reading comprehension. Our goal for the semester is to get the students to predict, connect, visualize, question, interpret, and critically respond when reading a text. This is a large responsibility so I need your help at home too!

How You Can Help at Home!

Reading Outside of School

It is so important that you encourage your children to read outside of school time! Children often gravitate towards fictional text and that is fine, but encourage them to read informational text as well. Recent research has shown that much of the reading adults do has shifted to informational text, so we need to give our students as much practice with this text as we can. Try taking 15 or 20 minutes a few nights a week to read with your child to encourage their development of reading informational text. When you read with your students, take the time to model how you reread, make connections, question, and expand on the author's thoughts. Your children will learn from watching you do it!

If you're child isn't interested in informational text, that's okay! There is a book out there that will hold your child's interest. Make an effort to find that book and model the same strategies with it. The students need to master these concepts for all literature, so any practice helps.

Believe it or not, we have to help the students develop visual literacy as well. Gaining the intended knowledge or meaning behind a visual is a skill that students must practice and we have to work to provide that practice for them. You can do picture walks with your children, meaning that you go through the text and look at the visual aspects to discuss and make predictions about what the text will be about. Asking the student about the central focus, contrast, angles, and purpose of the visual will help them to further develop their visual literacy.