Reading Comprehension

In a previous article, I discussed that reading has many variations. My article addressed reading fluency. In today’s article, I would like to talk about reading from a different perspective.

While reading fluently is very important, so is reading comprehension or reading for meaning. Some children, and adults alike, are very fluent readers. When listening to the person read, one might assume that the person is an outstanding reader. However, when questioned about what was read, they may not be as wise. Naming words and comprehending words do not always come together.

It is very important for a reader to be able to understand what he/she is reading. There are many different techniques that a teacher uses to strengthen reading comprehension.

Primary grade teachers usually use book talks. While reading a story to the children, the teacher will stop and ask questions about what was read. The teacher will usually also ask the students to predict what might happen next in the story.

As a child becomes a better reader, it becomes more difficult for teachers to use book discussions. The children are usually participating in lengthier self-selected book reading. The children may all be reading a different book, some of which the teacher may have not even read him/herself. For these children, teachers are more known for using programs or pre-made questions such as the Accelerated Reading Program. The teacher may also have students read short passages and answer questions about it.

Parents can help strengthen their child’s reading comprehension at home. Try some of the ideas below.

When reading to a child, ask questions to check for understanding.

Ask the child to predict what will happen next.

Ask the child to retell the story.

Ask the child to discuss or draw a favorite part or character from the book.

More About Reading

Four Blocks Overview

Four Blocks Guided Reading

Four Blocks Self-Selected Reading