Using these comprehension strategies can be very beneficial, but the big win for the learner is that he is actually engaged in metacognition. The number of passive readers in the average classroom cannot be overstated. When the teacher questions a student after reading a paragraph, page or chapter, that deer-in-the-headlights look is by no means unusual.
The first comprehension tool is centered, once again, around questions. QAR, or Question-Answer Relationship, helps students understand different types of questions, and helps them know how and where to find the answers.
The four types of questions are right there, think and search questions, author and you, and on my own. These right there questions begin with who, what, when, where or how. They are basic level questions and can easily be found within the text.
Think and search questions might begin with the following phrases:
Author and you questions require the reader to utilize schema and make inferences. Schema is also involved in the last type of question, on my own, which asks the reader’s opinion.
Thinking aloud is a way to expose your thinking to students. The reading process can be mysterious, and this strategy is great for communicating how the reader constructs meaning from a text.
A teacher can use the think-aloud strategy throughout the day in any content area. Specifically in the area of reading, though, think-alouds are very useful when focusing on inference, predicting, and visualizing.
Think-aloud can be a powerful strategy to use with a short article during guided reading instruction. The teacher might spotlight before, during and after strategies to use when reading.
The more we keep the focus on metacognition, the better our students will fare not only as readers, but as learners in general. Implement one of these strategies today, and watch your students rise to the occasion of higher-level thinking!
About My Guest Blogger
- Classroom Teacher
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