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Novel Bookmarks Grades 4+
Summary: Help increase your students reading comprehension.
My students have difficulty with comprehension and sequential events in novels. They use an index card marked with the chapter they're reading as their bookmark. On the card, they jot down one or two sentences about the chapter, any difficult words and the characters they met. This process only takes a few minutes because it is done when the chapter is fresh in their minds. We continue creating bookmarks throughout the book and keep them together with elastic. At the end of the book, we read the cards as a review. The cards are a great way to keep track of sequential happenings and can be used to write up a book summary. (I borrowed this idea from my daughter who thought of this when she was in the sixth grade.)
Submitted by: Dolly Charpentier [email protected], a seventh and eighth grade L.D. teacher at Samoset Middle School in Leominster, Massachusetts. This idea was posted in the NEA's Weekly Works4Me Newsletter.
Point of View
A fun lesson that uses literature to help teach this skill. I have used the True Story of the Three Little Pigs. I just found a new book Pog by Lyn Lee. It is about a monster who is afraid of children! I used this in conjunction with a book unit on James Howe's Bunnicula series... Harold, the dog tells the story. We follow up by writing story bits in Chester, the cat's point of view or another character.
Repeated Readings Grades Any
Summary: A great strategy to use with your struggling readers. I have a communication system that works well for children who are experiencing reading difficulties. I present a short book to the student, have the student read it to me, and then send it home in a manila envelope. (I use the recycled envelopes from the office that they save for me.) The student must read the book to an adult at home, have the adult sign the envelope and bring the envelope back to school. The same envelope can be used again and again, and it provides a good record of what books the student has read. Next, the student reads the book to me again, and he/she gets a sticker. Five stickers earns the student time on the computer for learning games. By the time the students read their books to me, they can read them fluently and their self esteem soars!
Submitted by: MariLou Anderson [email protected] , an elementary special education teacher at Grygla Public School in Grygla, Minnesota. This idea was posted in the NEA's Weekly Works4Me Newsletter.
Secret Story Words Grades 3+
A fun whole-class vocabulary lesson. "I put names of people, places, things and vocabulary words from the story we've read on small pieces of paper and tape them to my students' backs. They wander around the room asking their classmates questions that can only be answered by yes or no. When they've figured out what their word is, they return to their seat and write down the significance of their word to the story. When everyone is finished, we review the words starting with the first person who guessed their secret story word correctly."
Submitted by: Janice Roehr , a fifth grade teacher at J.H. Gaudet Middle School in Middletown, Rhode Island. This idea was posted in the NEA's Weekly Works4Me Newsletter.
Skill Review Grades Various
Summary: Various activities that will help students with fluency and vocabulary.
Before my students begin reading aloud in class, I have them go over basic sight words from the Dolch Sight word list. We read the words together. (Choral reading) It takes about three minutes of reading time. This helps to practice words such as: like, the, did, we, begin etc. Hearing the words in a list helps them recall them quickly in a passage. I teach middle school students whom of which have repeated two or more grades. In these students I have found a lack of fluency in their reading. This effects their comprehension skills. We read the words from the pre primer list to third grade. This helps them tremendously when it is time for them to read. Some students try to go faster than the others. They think it is a race, they do not see that they are understanding and building fluency. To challenge all students, teachers can create their own list of words from the story (vocabulary) and have students read the list together before reading the story. Unfamiliar words will not make students stumble during reading.
Vocabulary builder: Make a list of unfamiliar words and have students
read the list together several times.
Submitted by: Angela C. Johnson - Columbia, Missouri
Summary vs. Response Grades 10-12
Students will be able to discern a summary vs. response/analysis prompt and generate appropriate responses of their own. Download the summary vs. response lesson plan in PDF format.
Submitted by: Chris Villalobos - Glendora, California
Title Predictions Grades 3+
Another great lesson for improved reading comprehension. "To help students with comprehension, I have them make predictions about what events might take place in the story based on the title of the chapter. I positively reinforce all predictions given. Once the predictions are made, I give a brief idea of what the chapter is about and ask the children to think about what questions they want answered when they read the chapter. We record these questions on chart paper. These questions help set up a purpose for reading. I've found that students are much more in tune with the story and are better able to answer questions with detail and enthusiasm."
Submitted by: Donna Florek [email protected], a third grade teacher at Knollwood Elementary School in Piscataway, New Jersey. This idea was posted in the NEA's Weekly Works4Me Newsletter.
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All Reviewed Children Books Grades Various
Carol Hurst's great site. Reviewed books by title, author, and subject.