STRATEGIES TO IMPROVE READING COMPREHENSION

Use these strategies to improve reading comprehension in your classroom.

Link to reading comprehension worksheets and tips.



Reading Comprehension Worksheets

Reading Comprehension Exam - The Three Most Common Mistakes

Reading Comprehension Test - How To Improve Results


1. BRAINSTORM WHAT THE STUDENTS ALREADY KNOW.

Ask the students to tell you what they already know about the text and then write this information on the board. It can be a really useful process for the students to then reorganize this information.

Students working in small groups can sort the information into lists or categories(characters, settings, key events). Provide each group with a large poster size piece of paper and ask them to rearrange the information into an informative poster.



2. FOCUS ON KEY ASPECTS OF THE SUBJECT.

Students look more closely at the text by focusing on single aspects or elements.

Students could:think of 10 adjectives that could be used when discussing the subject,describe a related or alternate setting,describe an integral process,list the people involved,write a one day diary account,write a packing or shopping list,write a definition or explanation,describe a personal experience,list the positive and negatives.give examplesor define the characteristics.



3. BUILD ON PRIOR KNOWLEDGE BY SEARCHING FOR MORE.

Students explore the text with the aim of finding one piece of information that is new. If there is nothing new in the text then a related subject area can be researched. Students that work quickly can help those that struggle. When everyone has discovered a new piece of information, these can be shared with the class.

The new information could also be used in a classroom display. Each student could write out their fact on a card or strip of paper and these could be placed on a noticeboard.



4. USE PRIOR KNOWLEDGE TO CREATE SOMETHING.Students take what they already know about the text to create something new.

Students could create a labeled diagram, write a short story, design a new model, write instructions or create a set of question and answer cards.



5. USE PRIOR KNOWLEDGE TO HYPOTHESIZE.

Students use what they already know to explain what might happen in a range of scenarios.

The teacher can simply ask text related questions that will open up discussion.

Here are some examples:

If your dog was not fed for two days, what would he do?If it rained for 10 days, what effect would this have on you?Imagine you can't read - write three benefits and three negatives about this situation.Imagine you had no friends at school - how would this effect your day?

6) READ THE TEXT SLOWLY

Students read slowly enough to understand each sentence of the text. They can be encouraged to create mental images of what is being read before moving on. As they read they circle (or write out) any words that they don't know the meaning of.

After reading the text, look the words up in a dictionary. With this new knowledge in mind, read the text again. Discuss the meaning of difficult words or ideas with other students or the class as a whole.

Look up any locations in an atlas.

7) MANIPULATE THE PARTS OF THE TEXT

Students can:
Identify the beginning, the middle and the end.
List the scene changes - each time that the story shifts location.
Identify the characters and the setting.
Ask who, what, where, when and why.
Identify the main idea of each paragraph or chapter.
Identify the introduction, complication and resolution.
Draw a story board.
Identify each characters relationship with the other characters.

8) CONNECT THE TEXT WITH THE REAL WORLD

Students connect the story with their personal experience.

How are the characters like people you know?

How are the characters different from people you know?

How is the setting like where you live?

How is the setting different from where you live?

Have you ever had a problem like the characters?

Would you have done what the characters did?

9) CONNECT THE STORY

Connect the story with other stories you have read.

How would you rate this story?
What story is better than this one? Why?
What story is worse than this one? Why?
How is this story like -------------- (choose another story)?
How is it different?

1O) CONNECT THE STORY WITH THE WORLD OF KNOWLEDGE

Discuss key aspects of the story with other students or the whole class (For example, the golden slippers in Cinderella could lead to a discussion about slipper types, slipper cost, slipper construction and accepted slipper use).

These discussions could lead to the researching and writing of a reports.

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