2Reading Comprehension What is reading comprehension?• Why is comprehension important?What instruction helps students develop comprehension?How can we monitor students’ progress in comprehensionHow can we adapt instruction for students with special needs?Display overhead – The five questions listed serve as the foundation for the presentation.Explain/discuss the importance of the 5 questions:What is reading comprehension?Why is comprehension important?What instructions help students develop comprehension?How can we adopt instruction for students with special needs?How can we monitor students’ progress in comprehension?Remind participants that throughout the presentation that they may have other questions regarding comprehension and to write them down for further clarification.It is also important that the participants feel safe to voice their anxieties to the group. With any kind of program change, peoples’ emotions will become apparent and it’s how we address these feeling that will determine the success of the program.
3Reading Comprehension Activity Brainstorm what you know about reading comprehensionWhat is the purpose of comprehension?What skills and strategies are “deemed” effective?What challenges do you anticipate in teaching comprehension?In small groups, discuss your thoughts on reading comprehension.Communicate your group’s thoughts on reading comprehension with the larger group.Explain rationale for the activity –The nature of this activity is to get the audience thinking about what they already know when it comes to Reading Comprehension. We want the participants to spend time addressing these three questions:What is the purpose of comprehension?What skills and strategies are “deemed” effective?What challenges do you anticipate in teaching comprehension?Remember, the nature of the brainstorming activity is to determine the prior knowledge of the audience. There are no right or wrong answers; it’s important for participants to understand this.Activity:Allow approximately 5-10 min. for independent work.Allow approx min. for table groups to share amongst themselves.Allow approx. 10 min. For large group sharing. Reassure participants that it is the goal of today’s presentations to address the groups’ concerns and issues.
4What is Comprehension? Comprehension is: The goal or purpose for readingThe process of simultaneously extracting and constructing meaning through interaction and involvement with written languageAn active, complex, long-term developmental, cognitive process of acquiring knowledge, of enhancing understanding, of constructing meaning that involves knowledge, experience, thinking, and teachingUnderstanding beyond knowingComprehension is not a product of reading. Rather, it requires purposeful, thoughtful, and active interactions between the reader, the text, the activity, and the sociocultural context.This page states the processes involved when students comprehend.Comprehension is critically important to the development of children’s reading skills…it’s the essence of reading. It is a complex cognitive process that requires an intentional and thoughtful interaction between the reader and text. Development and application of comprehension strategies is intimately linked to student success. Lastly, comprehension is not a product of reading, but as a result of the active engagement between the reader and the text, and not the activity or the context.
5Why is Comprehension Important? Comprehension is important becauseThe educational careers of 25 to 40 percent of American children are imperiled because they do not read well enough, quickly enough, or easily enough to ensure comprehension in their content courses in middle and secondary school…Although difficult to translate into actual dollar amounts, the costs to society are probably quite high in terms of lower productivity, underemployment, mental health services, and other measures. (Snow, Burns and Griffin, 1998, p.98)The purpose of the next two overheads is to provide the participants with the rationale for strategically teaching comprehension.Emphasize that the educational careers of 25-40% of American children are imperiled because of comprehension difficulties.Providing the participants a visual representation of these amounts will have a lasting impact on the group-- Perhaps having 40% of the group stand up.Three other key points are-Lower productivity,-Underemployment-Mental health issuesEmphasizing these points will further emphasize the importance of effective comprehension instruction.
6Why is Comprehension Instruction Important? Comprehension instruction is important because…Students are facing an increased need for a high degree of literacy, including the capacity to comprehend complex texts, but comprehension outcomes are not improving.Students in the United States are performing increasingly poorly in comparison with students in other countries as they encounter discipline-specific content and subject=-matter learning.Unacceptable gaps in reading performance persists; the growing diversity in the U.S. will likely widen the gaps even further.Little direct attention has been devoted to helping teachers develop the skills they need to promote reading comprehension.Policies and programs are regularly adopted, but their efforts are uncertain.As you continue to address the question “Why is Comprehension Instruction Important?” explain that comprehension and comprehension instruction are both vital components to student success. Emphasizing the following key parts will further direct the participants to focus on the need for effective comprehension instruction:Read bullets and emphasize key parts:Bullet 1: Increased need for high degree of literacyBullet 2: Poor comprehension performance with disciplinespecific contentBullet 3: Unacceptable gaps persistingBullet 4: Little direct attention to teacher trainingBullet 5: Efforts of adopted policies and programs uncertain(Rand Report Executive Summary, 2002)
7How Have Our Views About Comprehension and Comprehension Instruction Changed? We once thought of comprehension as a natural result of decoding plus oral language.We now know that saying words without understanding how to put the words and concepts together to make sense is not comprehending, and, in fact, it is not reading.We once thought that by asking students different levels of questions, we were teaching them how to comprehend.We now know that there is much more to comprehension instruction than asking questions, which most often involves testing rather than teaching comprehension.The information presented on this overhead is to prompt the audience into thinking about past practices and their effectiveness. Focus on the “We once thought” and “We now know” as well as these two main ideas:Word calling is not reading or comprehension.Testing comprehension is not effective teaching of comprehension.This will hopefully lead your participants to some self-reflection as to what they have done in the past which could lead to some large group discussion. The ideas of “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it” might have to be addressed. Remind participants that the goal should be to create independent strategic readers who are capable of engaging in a variety of literacy tasks and that perhaps what we have been doing in the past does not effectively accomplish our goal.
8What Do Proficient Readers Do To Enhance Their Comprehension? Activate background knowledge and make associations or connections with textAsk questions before, during, and after readingUse awareness of the purpose in reading the text, text forms and features, and then make decisions about reading rate based on this awareness.Visualize and use sensory images and emotionsVerify or change predictions based on the text and/or what is known about an author and his/her styleRead selectively, fluently, and decode rapidlyThis information is based on the proficient reader research conducted by P. David Person that is cited in Mosaic of Thought by Keene and Zimmerman. This research has been influential in how we currently look at comprehension and it has been useful in informing how we teach comprehension. Proficient readers have a variety or repertoire of strategies to use for comprehension, as listed in the bullets.Read through the bullets individually, making connections from one to another.
9What Else Do Proficient Readers Do To Enhance Their Comprehension? Proficient readers also…Monitor comprehensionUse “fix-up” strategies when comprehension breaks downDetermine what’s important in textDraw inferences during and after readingSynthesize informationInterpret text on a variety of levels (e.g., literal, interpretive, evaluate)Read and write a variety of text forms (e.g., narrative, expository, technical)(Keen & Zimmerman, 1997)
10Improving the Reading Comprehension Of America’s Children 10 Research-Based PrinciplesPurposeful & explicit teachingTeachers are clear about their purposesProvides a scaffolded instruction in research-tested strategiesIncludes explicit explanation & modeling of strategyDiscussion of why & when it’s usefulCoaching in how to apply it to textsClassroom interactions that support the understanding of specific texts.Includes discussion, writing in response to reading & multiple encounters with complex texts.Balances lower & higher level questionsFocuses on efficient & aesthetic responsesDeepen children’s learningThe purpose of reading is compression. How do we teach children to comprehend more difficult and varied texts? Until recently, we had few answers. But research from recent decades has provided a general outline of how to effectively teach reading comprehension.Effective comprehension instruction requires:1. purposeful and explicit teaching -Effective teachers of reading are clear about their purposes. They know what they are trying to help a child achieve and how to accomplish their goal. They provide scaffolding instruction in research-tested strategies (predicting, thinking aloud, attending to text structure, constructing visual representations, generating questions and summarizing). Scaffolded instruction includes explicit explanation and modeling of a strategy, discussion of why and when it is useful, and coaching in how to apply it to novel texts.2. classroom interactions that support the understanding of specific texts -Effective teachers have a repertoire of techniques for enhancing children’s comprehension of specific texts, including discussion, writing in response to reading, and multiple encounters with complex texts. They are clear about the purposes of teacher and student-led discussions of texts, and include a balance of lower and higher level questions focusing on efferent and aesthetic response. Well-designed writing assignments deepen children’s learning from text.
11Improving the Reading Comprehension Of America’s Children 10 Research-Based PrinciplesStarting before children read conventionallyChildren in Preschool & Kindergarten develop their comprehension skills through experiences that promote oral & written language skills.Environments can be literacy-rich through appropriate materials and practicesReading and rereading a wide variety of texts contributes to both phonemic awareness and comprehension.Teaching children the skills and strategies used by expert readersUses the text and prior knowledge to build a model of meaning.Constantly revises that modelDetermines the purposes of the text3. starts before children read conventionally -Children in preschool and kindergarten develop their comprehension skills through experiences that promote oral and written language skills, such as discussions, play activities, retellings, and emergent readings. Early childhood environments can be made literacy-rich through thoughtful inclusion of appropriate materials and practices. Reading and rereading a wide variety of texts contributes to both phonemic awareness and comprehension.4. teaches children the skills and strategies used by expert readers -Expert readers are active readers who use text and their own knowledge to build a model of meaning, and then constantly revise that model as new information becomes available. They consider the author’s intentions and style when judging a text’s validity, and determine the purposes that the text can serve in their lives – how it can further their knowledge, deepen their enjoyment, and expand their ways of examining and communicating with the world. They also vary their reading strategy according to their purpose and the characteristics of the genre, deciding whether to read carefully or impressionistically.
12Improving the Reading Comprehension Of America’s Children 10 Research-Based PrinciplesVarying their reading strategy according to their purposeCareful analysis of text to determine its appropriateness for particular students & strategiesPotential challengesGoal setting for lessonConsider conceptual & decoding demandsHold children accountable as independent readersChildren are exposed to high-level text and interactionsBuilding on and resulting in knowledge vocabulary & advanced language developmentChildren make connections between prior knowledge and what they are reading.Children are active in learning word meaningsRelationships between words and contexts and other known words.5. careful analysis of text to determine its appropriateness for particular students and strategies –Teachers analyze each text to determine its potential challenges and match it with their goals. They consider conceptual and decoding demands and apply strategies to meet those challenges. Interactions with texts requiring minimal teacher support help hold children accountable as independent readers. Scaffolded experiences ensure that all children are exposed to high-level text and interactions.6. builds on and results in knowledge, vocabulary, and advanced language development –Children are better able to comprehend texts when they are taught to make connections between what they know and what they are reading. Good comprehension instruction helps them make these connections more effectively. Vocabulary knowledge is an important part of reading comprehension, and good vocabulary instruction involves children actively in learning word meanings, as well as relating words to contexts and other known words. Teaching about words (including morphology) improves children’s comprehension.
13Permeating all genres and school subjects Children need to read in a wide variety of genresExperience and instruction are a crucial partComprehension should be taught in all subjects.Actively engaging children in text and motivates them to use strategies & skillsCreate an environment in which children are actively involved in the reading processMotivation to learn and apply skills and strategies during readingAssessments that inform instructions and monitor student progressProvides specific and timely feedbackIdentifies students comprehension levelsEvaluates child’s need for support in specific areasEnables teachers reliability to interpret data and communicate resultsContinuous teacher learningUse knowledge to develop the comprehension sills and strategies of all studentsUse assessment data, personal reflections and feedback to vary the support provided to students7. pervades all genres and school subjects –Children need to read in a wide variety of genres-not only narrative, but informational, procedural, biographical, persuasive, and poetic. They will only learn to do so through experience and instruction. Each school subject requires the ability to read in specific genres; therefore, comprehension should be taught in all subjects.8. actively engages children in text and motivates them to use strategies and skills –Effective teachers create an environment in which children are actively involved in the reading process. In such an environment children read more, which in turn improves their comprehension and knowledge. Children need to be motivated to learn and apply skills and strategies during reading.9. assessments that inform instruction and monitor student progress –The use of multiple assessments provides specific and timely feedback to inform instruction and monitor student progress toward research-based benchmarks. Good assessment identifies students’ comprehension levels as they develop from preschool to advanced grade levels, and helps the teacher to evaluate each child’s need for support in areas such as language development, strategy, and the application of knowledge. Effective assessment also enables teachers to reliably interpret data and communicate results to students, parents, and colleagues.10. continuous teacher learning –Effective reading comprehension requires continuous learning about the processes and techniques detailed in the previous nine principles, and ways to use such knowledge to develop the comprehension skills and strategies of all students. Working closely with their peers in school-based or interest-based learning communities, effective teachers learn to use assessment data, reflections on their own practice, and moment-by-moment feedback from children to vary the support they provide to students with different levels of expertise and confidence.
14What Comprehension Strategies Did the National Reading Panel Identify as Most Promising and Effective?The NRP identified the following comprehension strategies as most promising and effective for helping students improve their comprehension:Comprehension MonitoringCooperative LearningGraphic and Semantic OrganizersStory (or Text) Structure and MappingQuestioning (Answering & Generating)SummarizationMultiple Strategy ApproachThese strategies provide the foundation for comprehension instruction. According to the National Reading Panel findings, teaching a combination of the techniques can have a positive impact on student achievement.A key component to these strategies is Explicit Teaching, which has been shown to be highly effective in enhancing understanding. The rationale for this is that comprehension can be improved by explicitly or formally teaching students to use specific cognitive strategies when they encounter barriers to understanding what they are reading. The primary goal of these strategies is to have our students become Engaged learners. Then students achieve because theyWant to understandAre intrinsically motivatedUse cognitive skills to understandWant to share their knowledgeAn in-depth explanation of the strategies and examples of the applications will be the focus later in the presentation
15How Can Comprehension Strategies Be Taught? Effective comprehension strategy instruction is explicit.The teacher tells readers why and when they should use strategies, what strategies to use, and how to apply them. The steps typically include an explanation of the strategy, teacher modeling, guided practice, and application.Explanation – teacher explains to students why the strategy helps comprehension and when to apply it.Modeling – The teacher models or demonstrates how to apply the strategy, usually by “thinking aloud” while reading text that students are using.Guided Practice – The teacher guides and assists students as they learn how and when to apply the strategy.Application – The teacher helps students practice the strategy until they can apply it independently.The teacher then helps readers to use strategies flexibly and in combination with other strategies.Effective comprehension strategy instruction can also be accomplished through cooperative and collaborative learning.We as teachers must be explicit in our strategy instruction.The teacher tells readers why and when they should use strategies, what strategies to use, and how to apply them. The steps typically include an explanation of the strategy, teacher modeling, guided practice, and application.Discuss the 4 key parts:ExplanationModelingGuided PracticeApplicationEmphasize that effective instruction also includes before, during, and after reading strategies.
16When Is Comprehension Instruction Most Effective? Comprehension instruction is most effective when teachersModel and think aloud their own use of the strategiesProvide explicit and in-depth instruction and practice of strategies over timeDiscuss explicitly how each strategy helps readers to better comprehend textMake connections between each new strategy and what the reader already knowsGradually release responsibility for the use of strategies to studentsBuild in time for actual text reading and guided practice in strategy application by the studentsShow students how each strategy applies to other texts, genres, formats, disciplines, and contextsHelp students notice how strategies intersect and work in conjunction with one another.This page reinforces the concepts on the last overhead.Explain that the information is to provide teachers with more specific examples of what they can do to be more effective when teaching comprehension.Emphasize key concepts in each one of the bulletsModel, think aloud own use of strategiesProvide explicit and in-depth instructions and practice over timeDiscuss explicitly the benefitsMake connections between the familiar and unfamiliarRelease responsibility to studentsBuild in time for actual reading practiceShow the applications across areasHelp students see how effective strategies are interrelated
17Suggestions For Teaching Comprehension Strategies StrategyPreK-12-34-6Text TypeCOMPREHENSION MONITORINGXBThink-AloudsClick-ClunkCOOPERATIVE LEARNINGReciprocal TeachingPaired or Partner ReadingGRAPHIC AND SEMANTIC ORGANIZERSThink-LinksECompare or ContrastThis chart can be a resource to determine the appropriateness for specific strategies in relationship to grade levels and text types. State several examples—Finding Features and connecting them would best be used in a narrative text. Comparing and Contrasting is done easiest in Expository. Reciprocal Teaching is generally not used in Pre K-1 grades.
18N = Narrative or story text E = Expository or information text STORY (OR TEXT) STRUCTURE AND MAPPINGXFind the Features and Connect ThemNStory Maps or FramesQUESTIONINGQuestion StemsBQuestion Generating StrategyQuestion-Answer RelationshipsSUMMARIZATIONSummarizing TextSummary LadderMULTIPLE STRATEGY APPROACHN = Narrative or story textE = Expository or information textB = Applicable to both narrative and expository text
19What are the challenges for Teachers? The challenges are for teachers toUnderstand, choose, model, and use varied comprehension strategiesDesign lessons requiring active participationMatch strategy selections to the reading purpose, the text, the readers’ instructional needs, the activities, and the contextProvide multiple opportunities for purposeful and active strategy application and practiceTake time to observe and confer directly with students about their strategy learning and keep records of those observations and conferencesProvide ongoing assessment with the understanding that both assessment and improvement take timeMotivate students with energy, support, and positive reinforcementThis page serves as a reinforcer to the previous page on Comprehension Strategies. Participants are aware of the different strategies and now we want to focus their attention to the instructional considerations and the important role they play in the success of the program.The key concepts are:In-depth knowledge of the various strategiesLesson design and implementationMultiple opportunitiesCommunication with students, parents & staffUnderstand the relationship between assessment and instructionStudents are inspired to learnMeet the needs of the individual learner
20The Graphic Organizer provides the participants with a visual representation of the essential comprehension elements.Comprehension is a metacognitive, non-linear, multi-strategy process. It is reader, text, activity and content-specific, which means that no two readings are ever the same. Each reader brings his/her own background knowledge/experiences to a specific text based on the activity and the given context of the reading event. Effective comprehension instruction includes before, during and after reading strategies.
21Assessment and Instruction Guidelines 1. Work from a developmental model that integrates the literacy behaviors of reading, spelling and writing2. Use informal assessments as you teach.Observations and anecdotal recordsChecklistsLiteracy/learning interviews and attitude surveysIRIs, running records, miscue analysisFluency checksReading, spelling, and writing samples3. Welcome surprises for what the assessments say about individual children. (What students can do and what they want to show many not match expectations based on the developmental model.)4. Do not assess students at their frustration level.5. Start with what students can do and track progress over time..The teachers role in the reading process is to create experiences and environments that introduce, nurture, or extend students’ abilities to engage with text. A major factor in this process is assessment. It is important to understand the natural relationship between assessment and instruction. We need to ask ourselves the question, “What information are we looking for and what do we want to do with it?” Effective assessment tools are designed to be used in multiple ways for a variety of purposes. Knowledge, application, and engagement are all critical outcomes of reading with comprehension; assessments that reflect all three of these outcomes are needed. Research has shown that improving reading comprehension and preventing poor reading outcomes require measuring outcomes at every stage of learning. Assessment tools provide teachers with formative feedback which then allows for the monitoring of teaching effectiveness and student learning.
22Checking for Understanding Partner Review What Have You Learned So Far?1. Review your notes2. Partner 1 reviews new learning for minutes3. Partner 2 for 90 seconds4. Partner 1 again for 60 seconds5. Partner 2 finishes by reviewing for 30 seconds6. Write any remaining questionsRemember: You cannot repeat what your partner sharesAt this juncture of the presentation it will be useful for the participants to have some time to process the information they have just learned. Be aware of when they have had enough new information and need time to digest the new learning. Be sure to go over the directions for the activity and specify how much time they will have.Partner Activity:Have each participant find their __________ partnerEach pair designates a “1” and a “2”Everyone reviews their own notes (2-3 mins.)Partner 1 reviews new learning for 2 mins.Partner 2 for 90 secondsPartner 1 again for 60 secondsPartner 2 finishes by reviewing for 30 secondsDid either partner have any questions that need to be addressedYou cannot repeat what your partner shares!!!!