Think alouds


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Think alouds

  1. 1. Think Aloud Strategy
  2. 2. Think-alouds have been described as "eavesdropping on someone's thinking." With this strategy, teachers verbalize aloud while reading a selection orally. Their verbalizations include describing things they're doing as they read to monitor their comprehension. The purpose of the think-aloud strategy is to model for students how skilled readers construct meaning from a text.
  3. 3. What Is It? The think-aloud strategy asks students to say out loud what they are thinking about when reading, solving math problems, or simply responding to questions posed by teachers or other students. Effective teachers think out loud on a regular basis to model this process for students. In this way, they demonstrate practical ways of approaching difficult problems while bringing to the surface the complex thinking processes that underlie reading comprehension, mathematical problem solving, and other cognitively demanding tasks.
  4. 4. Thinking out loud is an excellent way to teach how to estimate the number of people in a crowd, revise a paper for a specific audience, predict the outcome of a scientific experiment, use a key to decipher a map, access prior knowledge before reading a new passage, monitor comprehension while reading a difficult textbook, and so on. Getting students into the habit of thinking out loud enriches classroom discourse and gives teachers an important assessment and diagnostic tool.
  5. 5. How to use think-alouds? • Explain that reading is a complex process that involves thinking and sense- making; the skilled reader's mind is alive with questions she asks herself in order to understand what she reads.
  6. 6. • Select a passage to read aloud that contains points that students might find difficult, unknown vocabulary terms, or ambiguous wording. Develop questions you can ask yourself that will show what you think as you confront these problems while reading.
  7. 7. • While students read this passage silently, read it aloud. As you read, verbalize your thoughts, the questions you develop, and the process you use to solve comprehension problems. It is helpful if you alter the tone of your voice, so students know when you are reading and at what points you begin and end thinking aloud.
  8. 8. Coping strategies you can model include: · Making predictions or hypotheses as you read: "From what he's said so far, I'll bet that the author is going to give some examples of poor eating habits." · Describing the mental pictures you " see" : "When the author talks about vegetables I should include in my diet, I can see our salad bowl at home filled with fresh, green spinach leaves."
  9. 9. · Demonstrating how you connect this information with prior knowledge: "'Saturated fat'? I know I've heard that term before. I learned it last year when we studied nutrition." · Creating analogies: "That description of clogged arteries sounds like traffic clogging up the interstate during rush hour." · Verbalizing obstacles and fix-up strategies: "Now what does 'angiogram' mean? Maybe if I reread that section, I'll get the meaning from the other sentences around it: I know I can't skip it because it's in bold-faced print, so it must be important. If I still don't understand, I know I can ask the teacher for help,"
  10. 10. • Have students work with partners to practice "think-alouds" when reading short passages of text. Periodically revisit this strategy or have students complete the assessment that follows so these metacomprehension skills become second nature.
  11. 11. While I was reading, how much did I use these "think- aloud strategies? Not much A little Most of the time All of the time Making and revising predictions . . . . Forming mental pictures . . . . Connecting what I read to what I already know . . . . Creating analogies . . . . Verbalizing confusing points . . . . Using fix-up strategies . . . . Examples of Visual Representations: Think-Aloud Assessment
  12. 12. Why use think-alouds? It helps students learn to monitor their thinking as they read and improves their comprehension. It teaches students to re-read a sentence, read ahead to clarify, and/or look for context clues to make sense of what they read. It slows down the reading process and allows students to monitor their understanding of a text.
  13. 13. Why Is It Important? By verbalizing their inner speech (silent dialogue) as they think their way through a problem, teachers model how expert thinkers solve problems. As teachers reflect on their learning processes, they discuss with students the problems learners face and how learners try to solve them. As students think out loud with teachers and with one another, they gradually internalize this dialogue; it becomes their inner speech, the means by which they direct their own behaviors and problem-solving processes (Tinzmann et al. 1990). Therefore, as students think out loud, they learn how to learn. They learn to think as authors, mathematicians, anthropologists, economists, historians, scientists, and artists. They develop into reflective, metacognitive, independent learners, an invaluable step in helping students understand that learning requires effort and often is difficult (Tinzmann et al. 1990). It lets students know that they are not alone in having to think their way through the problem-solving process.
  14. 14. Think-alouds are used to model comprehension processes such as making predictions, creating images, linking information in text with prior knowledge, monitoring comprehension, and overcoming problems with word recognition or comprehension (Gunning 1996). By listening in as students think aloud, teachers can diagnose students' strengths and weakness. "When teachers use assessment techniques such as observations, conversations and interviews with students, or interactive journals, students are likely to learn through the process of articulating their ideas and answering the teacher's questions" (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics 2000).
  15. 15. Reciprocal Think- Alouds
  16. 16. Students work together in pairs, thinking aloud, while they read a difficult text or hypothesize something in science, or compare opposing view points in social studies. How it works • one student thinks aloud • the other writes down what is said • students change roles • reflection on the process • write about the findings While the teacher reads a text aloud, students complete a think-aloud thought on a sticky note and mark it as an idea to use during another project such as journaling.
  17. 17. Prompts For Using Think-Alouds  So far I’ve learned…  This made me think of…  That didn’t make sense…  I think _____will happen next.  I reread that part because…  I was confused by…  I think the most important part was…  That is interesting because…  I wonder why…  I just thought of…
  18. 18. Let’s Read
  19. 19. "I've just got to get my merit badge today," thought Jim. He was lost. His compass had broken when it fell out of his hands and hit the rocks. Dad will be disappointed if I don't pass this time. Jim couldn't find the path to take to get back to camp. He saw some boys through the bushes. They were wearing the same troop number as Jim. "I'll just cut through here and get back to camp. No one will know I didn't take the right way, but what about the rocks?" he thought. He was supposed to return with seven rocks that Mr. Sims had left along the path. "I'll just bring back any rocks I find," he thought. Jim picked up some rocks that looked a lot like the rocks Mr. Sims had shown them. "I'm here!" Jim shouted when he arrived. "Here are my rocks." Mr. Sims took the rocks and gave Jim a funny look. "These rocks don't have a green mark painted on them, Jim," he said.