Hey teacher peeps, are you looking for some strategies to reading for your students? If you’re like me, you’ve noticed an overarching theme, that students are not reading like they need. As a kid, my parents forced me to read every day for an hour. I hated it, until I discovered Harry Potter, and found that reading could in fact be fun. In fact, it was such a release, that it took me to far off lands and said things that I just didn’t know how to say as a 5th grader. Reading opened up doors for me, and gave me a leg up in life from there on. Until then, I didn’t think that I was smart, and reading helped me feel like I was. Do you want to empower your students to feel smart? Then let’s join together and work on their strategies when reading. Maybe, just maybe, you will open doors in their heart and in their lives!
These are strategies that I have used in my own classroom!
1. Preview the Text:
This is the first step! Have students take note of the title, make inferences about what they are about to read, and learn about the author. This is a fabulous opportunity to talk about an authors creditability. I love to make this into a mini lesson. Where they learn about what qualifies that author to talk about the topic of the article.
2. Setting intention:
If they know why they’re reading a text, they will get more out of it. Maybe their intention is building their academic vocabulary, or digging deeper into a topic. For instance, right now my students are working through learning about the middle ages. They have to identify key facts within the reading and add it to their notes, as well as add their vocabulary, and answer comprehension questions at the end. One way that I could have them set their intention, is to have them answer an overarching question, or focus on using their vocabulary from the text, in a sentence. This way they are interacting with their vocabulary, and its not just words that they are reading in a text. They can actually understand what it means!
Building their academic vocabulary through secondary and primary sources, is such a huge focus in my classroom. Throughout COVID they missed this opportunity quite a bit. Now we are building on that! I’m not sure if I have mentioned this before, but this is my first year teaching 7th grade, since student teaching. I did not know how much of a struggle spelling was, until I taught them. My heart went into, I have got to help them with this mode. So we have been really digging hard into reading comprehension. COVID taught kids to be so lazy with their reading, and I am really working on getting them out of that habit. A couple of ways that we use their vocabulary in class is: 1. Having them define them, 2. having them use it in a sentence. 3. Spelling quizzes, 4. Using them in conversation. (I hope this helps you plug more content vocabulary into your lessons!)
4. Active Reading:
As they read, have students ask questions, make inferences, and research the answers to those questions that they had throughout the reading. This will help them to pay attention as they read, and dig deeper into the information that is presented to them.
5. Reflect and Summarize
Have them think about what they have read, and how it relates to their lives. As well as summarize what they read. Maybe pulling out 3-5 facts that stood out to them, and how that applies to their lives.
I have a couple of reading comprehension strategies that I use in my own classroom: I use WebQuests, and read/responds. Below are a few examples from my store! I hope they help your students dig a little deeper!
I hope these help you with your strategies to reading with your littles!
Have a great day!