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How smart readers think

Subject Matters Chapter 2:


08 What Does This Mean for Teaching?

07 Various Kinds of Reading

06 Reading: Staged & Recursive Process


01 Reading Lessons

02 Reading Is More Than Decoding

03 Reading Is An Active, Constructive Process

04 Good Readers & Their Strategies

05 Prior Knowledge & Comprehension

Reading lessons


Page 28

Reading Lessons

Much of the knowledge in our subject fields is stored in print and we urgently want that material to be open, available, and readable for our studentsWhat do we need to know about the mental processes called "reading" to help students access our content?

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Reading is more than decoding


Page 29

Reading Is More Than Decoding

A small fraction of students manage to arrive in middle or even high school with lingering decoding problemsThose few kids should have been identified long ago for services for additional guidanceIf large numbers of older students are having trouble reading content area texts, it's not because they were shorted on phonics and now "can't sound out the words"

Reading Is An Active, Constructive Process


Page 29-30

Reading Is An Active, Constructive Process

Readers actively build and construct meaning from a textThe squiggles we call words have to be built into meaningful concepts by the mind of a hard-working reader

Good readers and their strategies


Students run their eyes over every word, dutifully "doing the reading", but not making satisfactory meaning

Page 32

Page 30

As a mature reader, your mental strategies have become mainly automatic and unconscious

Thinking Strategies of Effective Readers:

Good Readers and Their Strategies

  • Visualize
  • Connect
  • Question
  • Infer
  • Evaluate
  • Analyze
  • Recall
  • Self-monitor

    Prior Knowledge & Comprehension


    Page 32-35

    • Schema is a web that stores and connects all the information in your mind related to a given topic
    • Students may have schema, but they don't activate it. As a result, they don't understand or remember the material
    • Getting meaning from print is dependent on what we already know
    • Having kids read mostly text is an incomplete experience for our subject fields
    • By engaging learners in prep work, teachers help them move toward independence in their reading

    Prior Knowledge & Comprehension

    Reading: Staged & Recursive Process


    Page 36

    There are activities that skillful readers typically engage in before they start reading, other things they do while reading, and still other things they do after they have read a passage, all focused on the process of using, expanding, or altering what they know to make sense of new information

    Reading: Staged & Recursive Process

    Before Reading

    During Reading

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    After Reading

    Page 37-38


    If the real task of reading involves a complex series of cognitive operations, it's no wonder that kids are often adriftWe face a normal distribution of kids for whom neither reading nor school necessarily comes easyWe teach, we need to understand reading a little better, including what is hard for kids when they step into our disciplines and try to read our subject matter

    Various Kinds of Reading


    Page 38-39

    • Problem & Solution
    • Compare and Contrast
    • Physical Description
    • Chronological Order
    • Cause and Effect
    • Steps in a Process

    Various Kinds of Reading

    The Common Core reading standards call for students to understand various ways that texts are structured, and many educators assert that recognizing a structure helps a student better comprehend the materialTeachers often speak of various text features, such as bold print headings, information in boxes, and visuals, as they help students read textbooks and other material A typical set of nonfiction structures include

    What Does This Mean for Teaching?


    Page 41-42

    What Does This Mean for Teaching?

    • We need to teach reading, not just assign it
    • Use methods, tools, activities that are particular to your fields of learning, and engaging reading materials that help our students understand and remember our content better - and maybe get interested in it
    • When you teach students strategies for getting more out of their reading, you can do it with materials from your content or you can add more engaging materials as well

    That concludes chapter 2!