LEARNING TO LEARNTRAINING PROGRAM LEVEL 6 Reading
OBJECTIVESTo help you realize the place of Reading in the process of learning a language and the skills involved in it.To make you aware of the different strategies that may be used to practice Reading.
Discuss the answers to the followingquestions: What is easier for you understand something or trying to communicate something? Why do you think that is? How much do you read in your own language? What kind of materials do you read and for what reasons?
Think about this: People read for different reasons. We can identify three of those purposes: Reading for survival Reading for learning Reading for pleasure Your reading purpose affects how you see reading. The level of your reading skills also affects how much you get out of reading. Analyse the diagram on the following slide and think about your own reading skills and process.
On which of these four aspects do you think it would be easier for you to startworking to get into this circle of growth of reading skills? Enjoys Reads faster reading Understands Reads more better Circle of growth (Nuttall, 1996: 127)
Activity Think about the following assumptions about reading, which ones do you think are real? a. We need to perceive and decode letters in order to read words. b. We need to understand all the words in order to understand the meaning of a text. c. The more symbols (letters or words) there are in a text, the more it will take to read it. d. We gather meaning from what we read. e. Our understanding of a text comes from understanding the words of which it is composed.
Can you read these three texts? 1. JLHPYAJMRWKMYOEZSXPETIBLA2. SNEEZE FURY HORSE WHEN AGAIN 3. My brother is a real book worm.
Compare the assumptions to the reading of the previous textsa. We need to perceive and decode letters in order to a. Did you understand text 1? read words.b. We need to understand all the b. Did you understand text 2? words in order to understand the meaning of a text. c. Which of the three texts tookc. The more symbols (letters or you longer to understand? words) there are in a text, the more it will take to read it. Did it have more symbols?d. We gather meaning from what we read. d. Did you understand text 3?e. Our understanding of a text e. What is a book worm? Is my comes from understanding the words of which it is brother a real worm? composed.
Discuss the following: Even if you think that you are not a good reader, you bring a lot with you when you read something: You bring your knowledge of the writing system. You bring your knowledge of the language, whether this is limited or extensive. (content words, syntax, grammar) You bring your ability to interpret and to “follow” the writer. You bring your knowledge of the world. You bring your reasons for reading and your reading style. Allyou have to do is learn to use this to your advantage.
Activity Look at the following reading strategies. Which ones do you think would be effective for you? Mouthing the words. Looking for a topic sentence in paragraphs. Skimming (reading the text quickly just to understand the general idea of it). Trying to use the context to work out the meaning of unfamiliar words. Mentally translating everything. Mentally translating complex or confusing passages. Trying to identify implicit logical relationships between sentence and sentence, and paragraph and paragraph. (For example making use of explicit indicators like: “however” or “consequently”) Scanning (reading to look for something specific in the text). Trying to distinguish between major and subordinate ideas. Speculating about the content of the text using the headings, pictures and the introductory sentences. Reading the whole text in detail to get all the specific information. Choosing to use a combination of strategies according to the nature of the text and the purpose of the reading. Using a dictionary to find the meaning of all new words.
Think about this: When it comes to choosing strategies, the best decision is usually to: Know as many strategies as possible. Try them all out with different texts and in different situations. Notice when they work and why they work. Choose the most appropriate one for each situation. Remember that the purpose for your reading is a good starting point in choosing the right strategy to use.
Activity Choose a text to practice your reading skills, the text can be just about anything from a song, a poem, a letter, an extract from a book or magazine, something from your own textbook, etc. Think about the reason why you are reading. Ask yourself: What do I need to know? What do I need to do? Depending on the answers to these previous questions you will need to read in different ways, choosing different strategies. When you read a text you will probably not be able to understand every word you see. That’s OK. You don’t need to. Read for the general meaning first. Don’t worry about words you don’t know. Many students look up every word in their dictionaries, but here’s an idea: When you see a new word, just read on. When you see it a second time, try to guess the meaning. When you see it a third time and still don’t understand, then look it up in your dictionary. Don’t give up, remember that all you need to do is find a way into the circle of growth and you are in. Try the five steps for reading on the next slide.
Five steps for reading 1 2 EXPLORE READ FOR GENERAL IDEA 5 4 3 READ FOR READ, READ TO SPECIFIC CONFIRM CHECK DETAILS
Five steps for reading1. Explore the materials, visuals, headings, etc., that come together with your reading activity. What can you see? What do you think the text is going to be about? What do you already know about it? Etcetera.2. Read the text once and try to get a general idea of what it is about, try to confirm or correct whatever hypothesis you had made in step 1. Don’t worry about unknown vocabulary, just read.3. Read the text again, this time look for more specific details that might help you define more clearly what you are reading. Make some notes or write down some questions which demand more specific detail. You may repeat this step as many times as you might feel necessary to get a better understanding of what you are reading.4. Read the text one more time, to check if your notes or questions were correct. You can get this far in a reading exercise without actually needing to understand 100% of the vocabulary used.5. Once you have checked that your predictions and hypothesis are accurate, you may want to read and confirm again the words and ideas which you might still feel you need to figure out. You may use any strategy you like to deal with the vocabulary you are still not sure of.