Strategies That Work

Chapters Three, Four, and Seven


Effective comprehension instruction is very important to a child's learning. The authors enforce that as teachers, we need to show kids what to do instead of tell them. The overall goal of this is to show kids how to construct meaning when they read to make them become independent readers.

Chapter Three: The Five Components of Comprehension

There are five components of comprehension - teacher modeling, guided practice, collaborative practice, independent practice, and application of strategy. I think that teacher modeling is really important. This allows students to see how to apply the certain strategy they are working on. Guided practice allows the students to practice the exercise with the teacher, which points them in the right direction. After this, collaborative practice occurs and students talk to each other to share ideas. Independent practice allows the students to try to understand the reading on their own. Once they get this down they are able to apply this strategy to other readings. Using these strategies gives the kids the opportunity to learn more.

Chapter Three: Introducing Different Strategies

This chapter also talks about how to introduce different strategies. The textbook suggests that the teacher should introduce one strategy at a time and go through them quickly. The teacher should also continue to apply these strategies to learnings throughout the year. This is really important so students will be able to engrain this knowledge into their heads and can always go back to it when needed. The teacher also needs to observe what the kids are doing. Many children learn differently, which is why teachers need to be flexible and think of many ways to teach lessons just in case someone does not understand.

Chapter Three: Characteristics of a Literate Community

- Foster passion and curiosity

- Provide an environment that values collaborative learning and thinking

- Large blocks of time for extended reading and writing

- Explicit instruction

- Language that teachers use

- Allowing kids to respond in different ways, such as drawing

- Responsive teaching and differentiated instruction

- Different types of texts

- Room arrangement

- Different resources

Chapter Three: Assessing Comprehension

Standardized tests show what students know as well as how well the teacher taught the information. They are used to show how much the students have learned in the class and allows teachers to be able to see what they can change about their teaching methods and what they need to focus more on in the future. As teachers, we need to:

- Listen to kids

- Read kids' work

- Confer with kids

- Listen in on conversations

- Observe behavior and expressions

- Chart responses

- Keep records of conferences and conversations

- Script what kids say and then reflect on it

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Chapter Four

Chapter Four: Language

Language engages kids in natural conversation. Teachers use language to explain and prompt thinking. There are many different instructional approaches that teachers can mix and match.

Chapter Four: Thinking Aloud

Thinking aloud allows students to show their background knowledge, ask questions and, from these questions, reach results for the readings. This gives kids the opportunity to participate. In order for kids to participate they need to understand the text, which is why teachers need to share their own thoughts, background knowledge, questions, inferences, and confusing parts of the text.

Chapter Four: Reading Aloud

Reading aloud allows students to learn reading comprehension. Interactive reading aloud works on comprehension because students do not have a copy of the text. During this exercise, participation is crucial for kids to be able to discuss the reading. This is known as teaching the art of conversation. First, teachers activate background knowledge so students know the topic of the book. Next, the teacher reads through the text then the students talk to each other about the book. After this, the whole class gets together to discuss the bigger picture. I think that these steps are essential so kids can discuss what they understood from the reading and what they didn't. Lifting text on a projector is another way to teach reading comprehension. Students read long with the text in front of them. This allows all the students to be engaged while writing down their ideas. There are many different ways for students to talk about readings, like paired readings or study groups.

Chapter Four: Rereading and Writing

Rereading is really important for students. This allows them to understand the text. We learned about this in class when we read the poem three times. Each time we read it, it made sense a little more. On the first read, students may miss important details. Rereading helps to assure that this doesn't happen. It is also important for students to write when they are reading, thus helping them understand the text more.

Chapter Seven

This chapter shows many different ways to connect the text to the students' background knowledge. This allows them to make connections to the reading which then leads them to understanding it. To begin to make connections, students should read stories and then mark down whenever part of it, or a character, reminds the students of something. There are many different ways to portray connections to the stories. Students can write it down on a sticky note or draw a picture.

Chapter Seven: Distracting Connections

Often, a child could get distracted by making connections to the text. Even today I get distracted by the connections I make when I read. Kids could be at one point reading about school and somehow end up thinking about the beach, while still reading, causing them to not understand what they just read. This is when rereading comes in, which was talked about in chapter four.

Chapter Seven: Connections

There is always new things to learn about, especially through reading. While reading new information, students could write down what they don't know and somehow connect it to information that they already knew. In some cases, students may have the wrong background knowledge, so when reading information they may have to correct their previous facts. Background knowledge can also be taught by other students during class discussions. All of these connections are supposed to help the student understand the information they are reading. In some cases, students may make weak connections, like simply having the same name as the character. In these instances, they should be focusing on a relationship or something else they have in common with the character.