• Reading Comprehension

     

    Reading Comprehension

    Parent Handout

     

    What is Reading Comprehension?

    Reading comprehension is the ability to understand what is being read. Children must be able to read the words in the text and combine it with what they already know to "think" about what the au-thor is trying to say. Reading comprehension is NOT just finding answers in the text. Children must be able to interact with the text, think deeper, analyze, predict and be able to summarize what is written.

    How can I help my child with reading comprehension?

    Before reading, look through the book and find words that your child may not know the meaning. Talk about the words with your child– discuss the meaning of the word and give examples. For example, "I was looking through the book and found this word, „cstatic‟ Ecstatic means very, very happy and excited. I was ecstatic on the day you were born. Can you think of a time when you were ecstatic?"

    Before reading a story with your child, look at the cover. Read the title and look at the picture if there is one. Talk about what you already know about the topic and try to make a connection with what your child already knows. For example, before reading a book on "Desert Animals", you can talk about what your child already knows about the desert and animals that live in differ-ent areas. Activating this "prior knowledge" helps with reading comprehension.

    While reading, help your child make connections with the text. When you ask your child a ques-tions such as "how would you feel if that happened to you?" or "does this part of the story remind you of our vacation on the beach?" you are having your child make a "text-to-self" connection".

    Encourage your child to make predictions while reading. ("What do you think will happen next?" "Let‟ keep reading and see").

    Model thoughtful question asking while reading. Stay away from yes/no questions. Questions such as "Why do you think the boy was afraid?" is preferable to "Was the boy afraid?"

    Model what good readers do when they don‟ understand what they are reading. "Think-aloud", or verbalize, what you are doing. For example, "I‟ not quite sure I what this means, I‟ going to go back and re-read this part."

    During and after reading, have your child retell or summarize the text.

    Encourage your child to "make a movie in his/her head" while reading. This strategy is known as mental imagery and helps with reading comprehension. If reading a chapter book with limited pictures on the pages, stop periodically in the story and share with your child how you are pictur-ing the scene and ask him/her to share with you.

    Read aloud to your child and read with your child everyday!

     

     

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  • Oral Reading Fluency

    Oral Reading Fluency

    Parent Handout

    What is Oral Reading Fluency?

    Reading fluency is the ability to read quickly and easily. It means that a child can recognize and decode

    words accurately and automatically and understand the words as they are being read. Children

    who do not read fluently (choppy readers) have to work hard on the mechanics of reading that

    there’s no mental energy left to think about the meaning of what they are reading.

    How do I know if my child is reading fluently?

    A simple way to know if your child is reading fluently is to listen to him/her read grade level text

    aloud. Have your child read a paragraph from his/her social studies, science or reading book. As

    your child reads consider the following:

    •How many words does he/she struggle with?

    •How easily is he/she sounding out an unknown word?

    •Is he/she reading with expression? (for example, pausing at commas, periods, etc.)

    •Can he/she retell the story or summarize what the paragraph/story was about?

    Many schools test students’ oral reading fluency skills as a way to screen for possible reading difficulties.

    Your child may be asked to read a grade level passage for one minute. The teacher will

    then calculate the “words correct per minute” (wcpm). Children who have strong word recognition

    skills and can quickly use word attack strategies when coming upon an unknown word are able to

    read grade level text at an appropriate rate for that grade.

    How can I help my child read fluently?

    To help your child develop reading fluency:

    •Model fluent reading. Provide opportunities when your child can hear you read aloud. Be

    sure to read with expression pausing appropriately at punctuation marks and changing

    voice for characters.

    •Teach your child high frequency sight words. High frequency sight words are words that

    readers are encouraged to recognize without having to sound them out. It is estimated

    that the first 100 sight words account for approximately 50% of what we read. Words

    such as “the”, “and” and “he” are considered high frequency sight words. These words

    can be practiced on flashcards. As you and your child read, point out the sight words in

    the story. Some children are able to identify the words on flashcards; however, this skill

    does not transfer to reading. Pointing them out as you read helps in transferring to reading

    the words in books.

    •When having your child practice reading aloud, help your child choose books at his/her

    independent reading level. Use the 5-finger rule as a guide. This means that a child

    shouldn’t struggle with more than 5 words on a page.

    •Repeated reading has proven to be one of the best strategies for developing reading fluency.

    Children should be provided with many opportunities to read the same passage (or

    story) orally several times. It is best if the adult reads the passage (paragraph, story) first

    and then has the child read and re-read the same text. Typically reading the text 4 times

    is suggested when focusing on improving fluency skills.

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    •Paired reading is another strategy to improve oral reading fluency. Using this strategy,

    you and your child read the words aloud together. Be sure to read at your child’s speed

    reading every word. Make sure your child is looking at each word as one of you points to

    the words. If your child reads the word incorrectly, say the word and then have your child

    immediately repeat the word.

    •Having your child listen to a taped recording of a book while following along in the story is

    another good strategy to improve oral reading fluency. Children benefit from listening to

    fluent readers read while following along in the book. Encourage your child to point to the

    words on the page while listening to the story as this helps to strengthen word recognition

    skills.

    •When listening to your child read, when he/she comes to an unknown word, wait 5 seconds

    to allow him/her to use word attack strategy skills to figure out the word. If you have

    to provide the word for your child, be sure to have him/her repeat the word aloud while

    pointing to the word in text.

    •There a several computer programs available for home use to improve oral reading fluency

    skills using the repeated reading strategy. The One Minute Reader produced by

    Read Naturally (www.readnaturally.com) and Raz-Kids interactive books (www.razkids.

    com) are two programs that you can order or download from the internet.

    •Whether your child reads to you or you read to your child, be sure to talk about what was

    read. Asking open ended questions such as, “What did you think of>.?, How would you

    feel if >..? What do you think might happen if>?” is better than asking questions which

    require a simple one word answer.

    •When possible, help your child make a real life connection to the story. For example, after

    reading a story share an experience that the story made you think of from your childhood.

    Encourage your child to share his/her thinking or experiences. Having such discussions

    with your child sends the message that the purpose of reading is to understand and think

    about the text rather than just read words.

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    First 100 high frequency sight words

    the to and he a I you it of in

    was said his that she for on they but had

    at him with up all look is her there some

    out as be have go we am then little down

    do can could when did what so see not were

    get them like one this my would me will yes

    big went are come if now long no came ask

    very an over your its ride into just blue red

    from good any about around want don’t how know right

    put too got take where every pretty jump green four

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  • Learning Sight Words

    Learning Sight Words

    The Dolch Sight Word list is a list of 220 words that make up between 50-70% of the

    words we encounter in text. Most of these words are “service words” that must be

    quickly recognized in order to read fluently. Many of the Dolch sight words cannot be

    “sounded out” and they need to learned by “sight”. Because recognizing these words

    is so important during reading, using a variety of activities to teach, practice and

    memorize the words is critical in teaching children to read. Try using these activities

    to help your child learn and practice sight words:

    Multi-sensory ways to learn and practice sight words:

    •Have your child write sight words with glitter glue

    •Have your child write sight words with wikki stix

    •Have your child write sight words with playdoh

    •Have your child write sight words with puffy paint

    •Put craft sand on a paper plate. Have your child practice tracing sight words

    in the sand.

    •Put hair gel in a zip lock baggie. Seal the baggie. Have your child write the

    letters of the sight word in the gel.

    •Squirt shaving cream on a plate or table. Spread the cream. Have your child

    write the sight words in the shaving cream.

    •Jump, hop, clap, tap out the letters of the sight word (t-h-e “the”).

    Sight word games:

    •Make sight word flashcards on 3 x 5 index cards and place them on a ring.

    Short and frequent practice with naming the words works better than longer

    sessions. Try reviewing the cards during commercial breaks.

    •Draw a star on the back of a 3 x 5 index card. Place this card and the flashcards

    face down on the table. Take turns turning over a card and reading the

    words. Try to be the player who finds the card with a star.

    •Play “Slap Jack” with the sight word and star cards. When the star card is

    turned over, the first player to slap it wins.

    •Make duplicates of the sight word cards and play the memory game.

    •Make several 5 x 5 grids and put sight words in the squares. Make your own

    chips with the words written on them. Play bingo.

    •Write the sight words on sticky notes and place them on a wall. Turn down

    the lights and give your child a flashlight. Have your child shine the light on

    the words and read each word.

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    the to and he a I you it of in

    out as be have go we am then little down

    do can could when did what so see not were

    get them like one this my would me will yes

    big went are come if now long no came ask

    very an over your its ride into just blue red

    from good any about around want don’t how know right

    put too got take where every pretty jump green four

    was said his that she for on they but had

    at him with up all look is her there some

    First 100 Sight Words

    Make, Take & Teach Multi-Sensory Teaching of High Frequency Sight Words Kit

    contains multi-sensory materials, multi-sensory cards and flashcards for all 220 sight

    words.

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  • Kindergartern high frequency words

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  • First Grade high frequency words

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  • Second grade high frequency words

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