In the early grades, reading is about a child being successful and “feeling like a reader”, and reading comprehension is the most crucial. The reality is that in order to get better at reading (and writing) a child must do both on a regular basis, read and write. But what is reading and how does it connect to writing in school?
Reading is about understanding. It is called comprehension, but it can be boiled down to the ability to simply understand what is said on the page. Now that doesn’t mean having to know every word, though it certainly helps. It is about understanding what the author is trying to say. A child is brought to that place when they are supported in getting started in a book. That can mean reading the first two or three chapters with the child. Reading comprehension is further assisted when a TTS tutor and the student are talking about what the book is saying to the child. Each book has its’ own message and its’ own way of telling that message or story. You might say it is the literacy of each text. By making sure the child is drawn into the book, it ensures that he or she will be more willing to fight through the words and phrases they have trouble understanding. In their struggle, they will also utilize another skill that is important to learning….they will use prediction to help them figure things out.
With an assistance from a TTS tutor the questions students will learn to ask are:
- Does this word have a root word and will that help me figure out the meaning?
- Can I narrow down what the text means by using context clues to help me as a reader?
- By understanding what the story is about, how can that help me understand what is page/paragraph/sentence is saying?
Every question asked by the reader contributes to making the magic happen that we know as reading. And as a positive reading comprehension experience emerges, how will that lead to writing, and writing in school? Look forward to the next blog: writing comes out of reading. And please send in your questions that you might have….we’ll answer them all.
I am a retired teacher and principal. My focus was and is reading and writing instruction. At TTS I have been supporting and teaching children from Grade 1 through English 12. What I would like to share with you is the how much reading is connected to writing and to success in school.