I read it


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"I Read It But I Don't Get It" by Cris Tovani
A Power Point presentation outlining and explaining some of the main ideas of the text, in order to introduce many of the concepts to other teachers.

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  • My story about undergrad methods classes, and not realizing the huge difference. So much focus was put on learning HOW to read in elementary school and I wasn’t given the opportunity to study comprehension strategies.
  • When we ask students to all read aloud, we discover surprises - Joe can read but his grades are poor, and Susie really struggles reading aloud but gets decent grades. What’s going on?
  • This is an early activity to help create community in the classroom.
  • Give more details about how the activity might go, maybe using personal examples.
  • Why do we join book clubs? Could be a good question for the audience before answering. I love this analogy!
  • Again, it sounds a little like a book club. Building community is SO important in a class like this, though. These students have been struggling for a long time, and have learned to successfully hide it and keep it hidden for survival purposes. It will be difficult to get them to discuss the issues.
  • Try having students write individually, then share. You may be surprised at the variety of responses and clever ideas you hear. Discuss them, and talk about how they work or don’t work. If any CAN ideas are valid, talk about them and how you use them.
  • *Prior knowledge *KWL charts *Stop and make meaning *Know when comprehension breaks down - can’t remember a character being introduced, a new vocabulary word, etc.
  • *Coming up in next few slides *No comment *Books clubs & groups/classes working together
  • *What’s the difference between reading a science text vs a pamphlet on diabetes vs a Grisham novel? “The House” activity on p. 25. (burglar vs kids skipping school vs insurance company purposes for reading that passage) *Give your thoughts exactly, demonstrating the techniques you are using, how you use them, and why. *This will help the students pay attention to their reading and comprehension, and be able to go back to sections easily for review.
  • *Should teach only one or two specific prompts per lesson, such as “This reminds me of….” and/or “I am confused because….” *Used after students have become familiar with a variety of strategies. Teacher anticipates difficulties and prepares a plant to help students work through it using particular strategies in a particular order.
  • Once students have begun using access tools to monitor their comprehension, it’s time to work on making that comprehension better. That’s where these strategies fit in. But these don’t work unless the students have learned to be aware of their own reading (meta-cognition).
  • The difference between inferring and wildly outlandish opinions!
  • *Good readers (as teachers hopefully are!) are constantly using strategies, and by talking aloud and letting students know what we are doing, we are modeling the behaviors they should be learning to implement.
  • I read it

    1. 1. I Read It, But I Don’t Get It Comprehension Strategies for Adolescent Readers By Cris Tovani
    2. 2. How do we read? <ul><li>We decode. </li></ul><ul><li>We become fluent. </li></ul><ul><li>(maybe) </li></ul><ul><li>That’s all there is! </li></ul><ul><li>Right? </li></ul>
    3. 3. What about comprehension? <ul><li>“ Every student [in your remedial reading class] knows what it feels like to be a reading failure. They know what it’s like to read a book and not ‘get it.’ They know how to fake-read and avoid real reading at all costs.” </li></ul>
    4. 4. What about comprehension? <ul><li>Middle schoolers are being asked to read increasingly difficult texts with little or no instruction on how to do so with understanding and comprehension. </li></ul><ul><li>Word callers - can decode but don’t understand or remember what they read </li></ul><ul><li>Resistive readers - can read but choose not to. </li></ul>
    5. 5. How can we help? <ul><li>By middle and high school, many students no longer see the value of worth or reading - using the “important book and literary histories” form, students talk about a book that once impacted their lives in a positive or negative way. </li></ul>
    6. 6. How can we help? <ul><li>As a teacher (always modeling,) bring in a few books with both kinds of impacts from your personal experience, and talk about them. Usually it’s the memories associated with the book rather than the book itself and the story it contains. </li></ul><ul><li>Students will bring in one book to talk about in front of the class. </li></ul>
    7. 7. How can we help? <ul><li>Even good readers use helpful techniques. </li></ul><ul><li>Many adults join book clubs to help them make sense of what they read, even for pleasure. </li></ul><ul><li>We would want a great guitar or piano player teaching us, so why not a great reader? </li></ul><ul><li>MODEL MODEL MODEL </li></ul>
    8. 8. Building Community <ul><li>Share with students your own personal reading struggles and how you work(ed) through them. </li></ul><ul><li>“ As a class we will read powerful text. It will change our thinking forever. Our reading will compel us to share our pasts, passions, and concerns. Creating meaning together will force total strangers to connect. We will reveal strengths, expose our weaknesses, and grow stronger as we build a community of readers.” (p. 12) </li></ul>
    9. 9. What do you/can you do? <ul><li>Ask students: What DO you do when you get stuck reading? </li></ul><ul><li>Try again: What CAN you do when you get stuck? </li></ul><ul><li>Put answers up to discuss </li></ul>
    10. 10. Strategy - an intentional plan that readers use to help themselves make sense of their reading, used by successful readers of all ages: <ul><li>They use existing knowledge to make sense of new information </li></ul><ul><li>They ask questions about the text before, during, and after reading </li></ul><ul><li>They draw inferences from the text </li></ul><ul><li>They monitor their comprehension </li></ul>
    11. 11. Strategy - an intentional plan that readers use to help themselves make sense of their reading, used by successful readers of all ages: <ul><li>They use “fix-up” strategies when meaning breaks down </li></ul><ul><li>They determine what is important </li></ul><ul><li>They synthesize information to create new thinking </li></ul>
    12. 12. Purposes for Reading - Access Tools <ul><li>Purpose is everything - if we don’t have a reason for reading, why are we there? </li></ul><ul><li>Thinking aloud - teachers model this to show how we put meaning into what we read. </li></ul><ul><li>Marking Text - using codes, teach students to mark text using pencils, sticky notes, and highlighters. </li></ul>
    13. 13. Purposes for Reading - Access Tools <ul><li>Double-Entry Diaries - two large columns on a page, with excerpted text on the left, and students’ thinking on the right </li></ul><ul><li>Comprehension Constructor - a kind of “road map” to comprehension created by the teacher </li></ul>
    14. 14. Fix-up Strategies <ul><li>Making Connections: use memories, personal experiences, information about the subject, the author’s style, and textual organization. </li></ul><ul><li>Make a Prediction: good readers anticipate what’s coming next. </li></ul><ul><li>Stop and Think: good readers ponder what they have read. </li></ul><ul><li>Ask a Question: struggling readers sometimes expect to find all the answers to their questions in the text, but sometimes answers can be found by using clues from the text and background knowledge to draw inferences. </li></ul>
    15. 15. Fix-up Strategies <ul><li>Write About What You’ve Read: jotting down a few notes may clarify meaning. </li></ul><ul><li>Visualize: use the images in your head to help you visualize the words in the text. </li></ul><ul><li>Use Print Conventions: key words, bold print, italicized words, capital letters, and punctuation. Poor readers often ignore conventions. </li></ul><ul><li>Retell What You’ve Read: readers who don’t recall what they have read before beginning new text end up doing it while they are reading the new material and therefore don’t pay attention to it. </li></ul>
    16. 16. Fix-up Strategies <ul><li>Reread: reread portions of the text. Struggling readers tend to think rereading means they have to reread everything. </li></ul><ul><li>Notice Patterns in Text Structure: recognizing how a piece is organized helps readers locate information more quickly. </li></ul><ul><li>Adjust Reading Rate: good readers slow down when something is difficult or unfamiliar. It’s okay to read faster, too, when something is familiar or boring. </li></ul>
    17. 17. Making Connections to Text: <ul><li>(p. 73) “Initially, students’ connections will be superficial, but with teacher modeling and practice they will become more sophisticated and will be able to go beyond the literal meaning on the page. </li></ul>
    18. 18. Making Connections Helps Readers: <ul><li>Relate to characters </li></ul><ul><li>Visualize </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid boredom </li></ul><ul><li>Pay attention </li></ul><ul><li>Listen to others’ opinions and connections </li></ul><ul><li>Read actively </li></ul><ul><li>Remember what they read </li></ul><ul><li>Ask questions and draw inferences </li></ul>
    19. 19. A Few Last Thoughts <ul><li>Teach students to be aware of their purposes for reading, their comprehension, and the strategies they can use to help themselves when they get stuck. </li></ul><ul><li>MODEL, MODEL, MODEL! </li></ul>