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Reading Strategies For Advanced Primary Readers K-2 Janet Machen Based on a book called, “Texas Reading Initiative Task Force for the Education of Primary Gifted Children” & a presentation by Melissa Leach, ESC 12.

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Reading Strategies For Advanced Primary Readers K-2

Janet Machen

Based on a book called, “Texas Reading Initiative Task Force for the Education of Primary Gifted Children”

& a presentation by Melissa Leach, ESC 12.


Texas Reading Initiative Task Force for the Education of Primary Gifted Children

Position Statement

The goal of the Texas Reading Initiative is for all children to read on or above grade level by the end of third grade. Although this goal is critical, it is minimal relative to students who read well. The Texas Reading Initiative does not intend for advanced readers to stagnate or regress. Rather, the objective is that all students, including advanced readers, receive instruction and materials commensurate with their abilities. Advanced readers must progress at their appropriate rate, which is typically more than one grade level per year. The result of ignoring gifted readers is educationally and emotionally unjust to these children.


Reading Recommendations for Advanced Learners

  • Use preinstruction assessment to accurately determine students’ instructional and independent levels of reading.
  • Use a variety of assessments beyond standardized achievement tests to document students’ progress and guide instruction.
  • Use strategies geared to gifted students’ instructional needs including curriculum compacting, advanced content, appropriate pacing, and above grade-level materials.
  • Focus on greater depth and complexity.
  • Incorporate into reading programs rich, inviting tasks requiring spatial as well as analytical and abstract thinking.
  • Encourage students to develop more complex, high-level comprehension and reach advanced interpretations.
  • Encourage and support advanced levels of vocabulary and word study.
  • Promote students’ research using technology to generate original investigations and advanced products.
  • Provide frequent opportunities for students to explore authentic text and a variety of genres.
  • Allow students to pursue individual interests through reading.
  • Provide examples of superior work in order to challenge students to ever-increasing levels of excellence.

Categories of Characteristics of Advanced & Gifted Readers

Positive Characteristics

Advanced Language

*Reads one to five years or more above grade level

*Is articulate; has advanced oral skills and a strong vocabulary

*Uses language ability to display leadership qualities

*Reads differently for different purposes or materials

Analytical Thinking

*Demonstrates complex & abstract thinking when responding to text

*Works an advanced problem to its conclusion

*Connects ideas across a range of circumstances & materials

*Enjoys logic problems, complex puzzles, and word games

Meaning Motivation

*Makes philosophical statements that exceed expectations for age

*Prefers to work independently

*Concentrates/reads for long periods of time on a topic of personal interest

*Asks penetrating, intellectual questions


*Is creative or inventive in approaches to problems

*Oral interpretations & written responses represent multiple points of view

*Draws pictures from unexpected angles & dimensions

*Infers possibilities missed by peers: It could also mean that…


Positive Characteristics (cont.)

Sense of Humor

*Understands humor and puns missed by age peers in a story

*Uses figurative language for humorous effect

*Has a more sophisticated sense of humor & understands adults’ jokes

*Enjoys books with multiple layers of humor


*Wants to discuss character motivation with a depth that exceeds the interest of peers

*Expresses concern for human needs in the story, community, and world

*Verbally or nonverbally demonstrates concern for the feelings and motivations of characters, peers or adults

*Seeks resolution for anything perceived as injustice

Accelerated Learning

*Seeks & enjoys advanced-level challenges

*Requires minimum repetition for mastery of language arts skills

*Displays musical, artistic, numerical, mechanical, or intellectual abilities beyond expectations for age

*Wants to read & develop a depth & complexity of information about a topic beyond the interests or attention span of most classmates

*Accesses data with ease using an unexpected variety of technological tools & printed resources Adapted from the KOI (Kingore, 2001)


Negative Characteristics of Advanced & Gifted Readers

*Is self-critical; impatient with failures

*Appears bored with routine curriculum

*Makes jokes or puns at inappropriate times

*Refuses to do rote homework

*Shows erratic behavior; easily upset; overreacts

*Does messy work

*Is demanding of teachers’ and other adults’ time

*Dominates other children

*Seems intolerant of others

*Is reluctant to move to another topic

Adapted from Richert (1997, 1982) & Kilgore (2001)


Books Gifted Readers Like…

Dole & Adams (1983)

*Sophisticated beginning-to-read books

*Nuanced language

*Multidimensional characters

*Visually inventive picture books

*Playful thinking

*Unusual connections; finding patterns & parallels within & among books

*Abstractions & analogies

*A blend of fantasy & non-fiction

*Extraordinary quantities of information about a favorite topic

*Books about gifted children


Types of Assessment That Can Be Used As Preassessments

____ Checklists

____ Interest inventories

____ Observations

____ Performance tasks

____ Process interviews

____ Records of independent reading

____ Running records

____ Students’ self-evaluations

____ Teachers’-selected reading samples

____ Writing samples



(Kaplan & Cannon, 2000)



*Determine cause & effect

*Determine relevancy

*Determine strength of argument

*Differentiate real & fantasy

*Discriminate similarities &


*Formulate questions


*Identify ambiguity

*Identify characteristics

*Identify the pattern

*Judge with criteria

*Make analogies

*Rank, prioritize & sequence

*See relationships


*Think deductively

*Think inductively


Application of Bloom’s Taxonomy to a Story – Setting

KNOWLEDGE Where does the story take place?

COMPREHENSION What words are used to describe the setting?

APPLICATION Illustrate the setting as it is described in the story.

ANALYSIS Discuss three ways that the setting is like or different from where you live.

SYNTHESIS Create a different setting for this story & predict how the story would change.

EVALUATION Establish criteria to evaluate whether the original or the new setting is more compatable for the characters.


Application of Bloom’s Taxonomy to a Story – Character

KNOWLEDGE Who is the main character?

COMPREHENSION Write two or three sentences describing the character.

APPLICATION Demonstrate how the character uses __ in the story.

ANALYSIS List three traits, & explain how the main character

exhibits these traits in the story.

SYNTHESIS Hypothesize what happens to the character after the story ends. Explain your prediction by relating it to the characters’ traits & actions in the original story.

EVALUATION Evaluate the main characters, & provide evidence of who were the cleverest, funniest, bravest, & most or least likeable characters in the story.


Reproductive/Skinny Questions Productive/Fat Questions

Simple thinking High-level thinking

One or two word answers More elaborate answers

Right & wrong answer responses Open-ended, multiple possibilities

Key Words & Phrases

List ____. Create ____.

Name _____. Analyze ____.

How many ____? What are different ways ____?


What is three plus two? What are all the ways to make

List all the parts of a clock. five?

What are all the ways besides clocks to tell time?