When I read the title of Chapter 11, it immediately caught my attention. Reading comprehension has been my main focus throughout this course on struggling readers and writers. The introduction alone brought different points to my attention that I hadn’t even really considered so far, so I knew this chapter was going to be informative, helpful, and interesting as well.
I never thought about how I as a reader foster comprehension. What I didn’t consider was when I am reading a textbook and studying for a class. How do I remember what I have just read, especially if the content is dry and boring? Usually I highlight, or underline things I believe will be important to remember. I also write things down and make my own little study guide from time to time.
Comprehension is something that many children struggle with. It appears to be a common problem among readers of all ages. There are many different factors that attribute to poor comprehension. A lack of background knowledge is a huge reason. When a child is reading something that is essentially foreign to them, how are they supposed to remember it? It can be hard enough to remember most things that you read, let alone something you know virtually nothing about. It is important to keep this in mind when evaluating comprehension skills, and selecting pieces that you have control other. Foster the reading selection towards the desires and needs of your students. When students encounter something, they place it in a schema, or their brain. Later on when they see something associated with that word or concept, they are able to draw that from their schema. The more things children have encountered and placed in a spot in their brain, the easier it will be for them to remember. It is important to really develop these schemas.
A couple techniques that I have used to far in my fieldwork include making graphic organizers to put together what they just read. Every time we read a story, I always casually ask them what we just read about. If it is a longer story, I ask at a couple different points throughout the story, since it can be a lot for them to remember. I am always surprised by the minute details that they remember from the story. It’s correct, though! They just sometimes miss some of the more major points. All in all, you have to do what works best for the different students. Help them to organize and recall information in the way that comes most easy for them.