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English Language Arts Module 2: Balanced Literacy. ELA Module 2: Generalist EC-6 Educator Standards.

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ELA Module 2: Generalist EC-6 Educator Standards

  • Standard I. Oral Language: Teachers of young students understand the importance of oral language, know the developmental processes of oral language, and provide a variety of instructional opportunities for young students to develop listening and speaking skills.
  • Standard II. Phonological and Phonemic Awareness: Teachers of young students understand the components of phonological and phonemic awareness and utilize a variety of approaches to help young students develop this awareness and its relationship to written language.
  • Standard III. Alphabetic Principle: Teachers of young students understand the importance of the alphabetic principle to reading English, know the elements of the alphabetic principle, and provide instruction that helps students understand that printed words consist of graphic representations that relate to the sounds of spoken language in conventional and intentional ways.

English LanguageArts & Reading


ELA Module 2: Generalist EC-6 Educator Standards

  • Standard V. Word Analysis and Decoding: Teachers of young students understand the importance of word analysis and decoding to reading and provide many opportunities for students to improve word analysis and decoding abilities.
  • Standard VI. Reading Fluency: Teachers of young students understand the importance of fluency to reading comprehension and provide many opportunities for students to improve reading fluency.
  • Standard VII. Reading Comprehension: Teachers of young students understand the importance of reading for understanding, know the components of comprehension, and teach young students strategies for improving comprehension.
  • Standard X. Assessment and Instruction of Developing Literacy: Teachers understand the basic principles of assessment and use a variety of literacy assessment practices to plan and implement literacy instruction for young students.

English LanguageArts & Reading


ELA Module 2: Grades 4-8 Educator Standards

  • Standard I. Oral Language: Teachers of students in grades 4-8 understand the importance of oral language, know the developmental processes of oral language, and provide a variety of instructional opportunities for young students to develop listening and speaking skills.
  • Standard III. Word Analysis Skills and Reading Fluency: Teachers understand the importance of word analysis skills (including decoding, blending, structural analysis, sight word vocabulary) and reading fluency and provide many opportunities for students to practice and improve their word analysis skills and reading fluency.
  • Standard IV. Reading Comprehension: Teachers understand the importance of reading for understanding, know the components of comprehension, and teach students strategies for improving their comprehension.
  • Standard VIII. Assessment of Developing Literacy: Teachers understand the basic principals of assessment and use a variety of literacy assessment practices to plan and implement instruction.

English LanguageArts & Reading


ELA Module 2: Grades 8-12 Educator Standards

  • Standard I. English language arts teachers in grades 8-12 know how to design and implement instruction that is appropriate for each student, that reflects knowledge of the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS), that integrates all components of the English language arts (i.e., reading, writing, listening/speaking, viewing/representing), and that is based on continuous assessment.
  • Standard II. English language arts teachers in grades 8-12 understand the processes of reading and teach students to apply these processes.
  • Standard VIII. English language arts teachers in grades 8-12 understand oral communication and provide students with opportunities to develop listening and speaking skills.

English LanguageArts & Reading

components of balanced literacy
Components of Balanced Literacy
  • Oral Language
  • Phonemic and Phonological Awareness
  • Alphabetic Principle (*Region 4 includes this one, many publications only refer to the other 5 components)
  • Word Study/Literacy Development
  • Reading Fluency
  • Comprehension

English LanguageArts & Reading

oral language
Oral Language

English LanguageArts & Reading

listening comprehension
Listening Comprehension
  • Listening and speaking go hand in hand.
  • Good listening skills will produce good speakers.
  • Students develop important reading comprehension strategies through listening comprehension.
  • Students develop good oral language skills through activities to promote listening comprehension.
listening comprehension development
Listening Comprehension Development
  • Instructional Strategies for Listening Development
    • Reading aloud books, both narrative and expository.
    • Combining listening comprehension activities with expressive oral language activities.
differences in quantity of words heard
Differences in Quantity of Words Heard
  • In a typical hour, the average child will probably hear
  • 616 words Welfare
  • 1,251 words Working Class
  • 2,153 words Professional
quantity and quality differences
Quantity and Quality Differences

Quantity of words heard in a typical hour

Quality of words heard in a typical hour

5 affirmations

11 prohibitions

12 affirmations

7 prohibitions

32 affirmations

5 prohibitions




616 words

1,251 words

2,153 words

Hart,B. & Risley, T. (1995) Meaningful Differences in the Everyday Experience of Young America Children. Baltimore: Paul H .Brookes.

importance of adult child conversations
Importance of Adult-Child Conversations
  • Talking to adults is children’s best source of exposure to new vocabulary and ideas.

Starting Out Right, 1999.

  • As a teacher, they are listening to every word you say!


why is home literacy an important factor
Why is Home Literacy an Important Factor?
  • Home literacy is a determining variable in the acquisition of school literacy.

Snow, 1983

why is home literacy an important factor1
Why is Home Literacy an Important Factor?
  • Early readers typically come from homes in which storybook reading is a frequent event.

Clark, 1984; Durkin, 1974/1975

oral language development
Oral Language Development

Optimal Oral Language Development

Scaffolding to Promote Development

Click to climb the scaffold

Provide feedback

Child’s Current Oral Language Development

Promote questions and conversation

Request clarification

Recast and expand ideas

Use questions and prompts

Model extended language

oral language development1
Oral Language Development
  • Instructional Strategies to develop Oral Language
    • Circle time experiences
    • Read-aloud sessions
    • Center time
    • Small group or one-to-one instruction
circle time experiences
Circle Time Experiences
  • Sharing time
  • Show and tell
  • News of the day
  • Content-area discussions to build vocabulary
  • Finger-plays
  • Songs, chants, poems, nursery rhymes
read aloud sessions
Read-Aloud Sessions
  • Improve vocabulary
  • Build word knowledge
  • Strengthen extended discourse
  • Provide opportunities to explore the sounds, rhythms, and patterns of spoken language
read aloud sessions1
Read-Aloud Sessions

Things to Remember Before Reading Aloud

  • Choose books for read-alouds on a variety of topics.
  • Use appropriate before-reading strategies.
    • Build background knowledge.
    • Pre-teach new words and concepts.
read aloud sessions2
Read-Aloud Sessions

Things to Remember During Reading Aloud

  • Spend time on traditional tales and nursery rhymes.
  • Be animated.
  • Pause for discussion.
  • Don’t always show the illustrations; allow the children to develop visualization skills.
read aloud sessions3
Read-Aloud Sessions

Things to Remember After Reading Aloud

  • Use appropriate after-reading strategies.
    • Discuss both simple (explicit) and complicated (implicit) questions.
    • Repeat – read favorite books.
    • Engage in story retelling.
questions responses
Questions & Responses

Ask Questions After Reading

  • Simple
  • Explicit
  • Who? What? When? Where?
  • Responses
    • Recall facts, events, and names
    • Focus on information in the text
    • Rephrase text that has just been read
  • Complex
  • Implicit
  • How? Why? What if?
  • Responses
    • Move away from what can be seen on the page
    • Analyze and elaborate information
    • Focus on thinking about what has been read and prior knowledge (making inferences)
    • Make connections
repeated readings
Repeated Readings
  • Repeated story readings give children the opportunities to deal with text on a variety of levels.

Morrow, 1988

repeated readings1
Repeated Readings
  • After subsequent readings of the same text, children’s comments and questions increase.

Martinez & Rose, 1985

  • They discuss more aspects of the text and in greater depth.

Snow, 1983; Snow & Goldfield, 1983

steps to successful story retells
Steps to SuccessfulStory Retells

Children retell independently.

Children retell with teacher support.

Teacher models story retell with props.

Teacher reads story aloud.

ten ways to retell a story
Ten Ways to Retell a Story
  • Oral response
  • Puppets
  • Dramatization
  • Pretend-read to a stuffed animal
  • Roll-paper movie
  • Flannel-board
  • Tell it to an adult
  • Tell it on a tape
  • Draw and tell
  • Pretend-read with a friend
modes of assessment for oral language
Modes of Assessmentfor Oral Language
  • Observe children
  • Monitor daily activities
  • Keep anecdotal records
  • Collect samples of work
  • Use checklists
  • Conduct progress monitoring assessments
  • Requires using formal and informal assessments to
    • Determine what children know;
    • Determine what could be understood by the child with more practice and experience;
    • Plan and guide instruction for each child;
    • Provide information for teacher reflection about instructional practices; and
    • Provide information for modification of curriculum, instructional activities, and classroom routines as needed.
  • Oral Language is the first step in Reading.
    • Connection between Listening and Speaking
  • Children must learn how to listen and to speak in order to be able to read.
  • VARIATIONS do occur.
phonemic phonological awareness
Phonemic & Phonological Awareness

English LanguageArts & Reading

phonemic phonological awareness1
Phonemic & Phonological Awareness


  • the SOUNDS that LETTERS make; used to sound out / DECODE what words say
phonological awareness
Phonological Awareness
  • “The term refers to a general appreciation of the sounds of speech as distinct from their meaning. When that insight includes an understanding that words can be divided into a sequence of phonemes, this finer-grained sensitivity is termed phonemic awareness.”

Snow, Burns, & Griffin, 1998, p. 51

phonemic awareness
Phonemic Awareness
  • The ability to HEAR the separate sequence of sounds in spoken words (involves auditory processing only).
phonemic awareness1
Phonemic Awareness

The most common barrier to learning word reading skills…

  • The inability to process language phonologically.

Liberman, Shankweiler, & Liberman, 1989

phonemic awareness2
Phonemic Awareness

How do you teach it?

  • Teach by blending and segmentation at the phoneme or sound break.
    • These are 2 critical skills that must be taught.
  • This is an auditory task.
  • Phonemes – smallest unit of sound in spoken language.
  • The ability to hear and manipulate phonemes plays a crucial role in the acquisition of beginning reading skills.
  • The sound units (phonemes) are not inherently obvious and must be directly taught.
  • Although there are 26 letters in the English language, there are approximately 40 phonemes, or sound units, in the English language.
phonemic awareness3
Phonemic Awareness

Critical Skills

  • Isolate the sound

Example: The first sound in map is /mmmm/.

  • Blending – put together Example: /mmm/ – / aaaa/ – /pppp/ is map.
  • Segmenting – pull apartExample: The sounds in map are /mmm/ – /aaa/ – /pppp/
phonemic awareness4
Phonemic Awareness
  • Phonemic awareness is an auditory skill

Once children can understand the sound, then teachers can introduce the letters and manipulate them to form sounds and words.

phonemic awareness5
Phonemic Awareness
  • Other ways to teach phonemic awareness
    • Identify whether pairs of similar words are the same or different
    • Identify whether words rhyme
    • Identify whether words begin or end with the same sound
building phonemic awareness
Building Phonemic Awareness
  • Rhyme – usually the first experience with language
    • cat hat mat fat
  • Alliteration – attention on initial phonemes
    • seven silly songs
  • Syllables – segmenting words by sounds
    • Education Ed/u/ca/tion
    • Counting syllables – clap or tap
building phonemic awareness1
Building Phonemic Awareness
  • Onset – Initial consonant or consonant cluster of a one-syllable word.
    • top /t/op shell /sh/ell
  • Rime – The vowel and consonant following the onset.
    • top t/op/ shell sh/ell/
word families




Word Families
  • it add, s, m, h, f
  • en add d, k, b, m, t

Activity – Make Word Families

phonemic skills
Phonemic Skills

Typical Development Pattern

  • Claps words in sentences.
  • Claps syllables in words.
  • Can identify initial, end then middle sound.
  • Blends 3 - 4 phonemes in 1 syllable word.
  • Segments 3 - 4 phonemes in 1 syllable word.

Distinguishes between which words sound the same and which are different.

Identifies rhyming words.

Produces a rhyming word.

Can produce onset plus rhymes.

Orally blends phonemes.

Remember that all patterns have exceptions and variations may occur.

assessing phonemic awareness
Assessing Phonemic Awareness
  • Assessment is used to drive and develop instruction.
  • Assess to find their ‘readiness level’.
phonemic awareness6
Phonemic Awareness

Formal Assessments

  • Test of Phonological Awareness (TOPA) Torgeson, & Bryant (1993)
  • Lindamood Auditory Conceptualization Test Lindamood, H., & Lindamood, P. C. (1979)
  • Yopp-Singer Test of Phoneme Segmentation (K-1)
  • Rosner-Simon Auditory Analysis Test (Grade 2+)
  • Texas Primary Reading Inventory (TPRI) (K-2)
  • Tejas Lee (Spanish Version)

Formal Assessments

  • Woodcock Reading Mastery Test or Woodcock-Johnson Psychoeducational Battery-Revised
  • Diagnostic Assessments of Reading (DAR)
    • Roswell & Chall (1992)
  • Brigance Diagnostic Inventory of Essential Skills Brigance, (1980)
  • Others…
  • 2nd stage in reading
    • Phonological and Phonemic Awareness
  • Use Informal / Formal Assessments to develop a plan.
alphabetic principle
Alphabetic Principle

English LanguageArts & Reading

alphabetic principle1
Alphabetic Principle
  • The ability to recognize that letters represent sounds and that words are read in a L to R order.
  • Development
    • Letter Recognition
    • Letter-Sound Correspondence
    • Sounding Out Words
    • Words into Sentences
teaching alphabetic principle
Teaching Alphabetic Principle

1st step – Letter Recognition

  • Knowing the names of the letters of the alphabet.
  • Knowing the sounds of the letters of the recognized letters of the alphabet.
  • Knowing that the same letter can be presented in upper or lower case form.
teaching alphabetic principle1
Teaching Alphabetic Principle

2nd step – Letter-Sound Correspondence

  • Is explicit and systematic.
  • Presents initial instruction of the common sounds associated with individual letters.
  • Progresses to blending sounds together to read words.

Teaching Letter-Sound Correspondences

  • Teach more frequently-used letters and sounds.
  • Establish a logical order of introductions (the order will vary according to curriculum adoptions and reading theorists).
  • Begin with a productive sequence that permits student to make and read words as quickly as possible.
  • Logical order of introduction.

Teaching Letter-Sound Correspondences

  • Begin with continuous sounds.
    • mmmm, ssss
  • Add stop (clipped) sounds.
    • d, p, t
  • Introduce a few letter-sound correspondences at a time.
  • By teaching 11 letter-sound correspondences, students can read over 100 words.
  • Provide plenty of practice.
teaching alphabetic principle2
Teaching Alphabetic Principle

3rd Step – Sounding Out Words

  • Students say each sound in a word and sustain that sound as they progress to the next.
  • Students put those sounds together to make a whole word. This must be taught explicitly.
  • Students sound out the letter-sound correspondences (silently) and then say the whole word.
teaching alphabetic principle3
Teaching Alphabetic Principle

Sounding out practice – direct instruction

  • Start with short VC (vowel-consonant) and CVC (consonant-vowel-consonant) which have 2 or 3-letters in the words. Also, in which the letters represent their most common sounds in longer words (4 or 5-phoneme words).
  • KISS - Keep It Sweet and Simple.
teaching alphabetic principle4
Teaching Alphabetic Principle

Sounding Out Words

  • Introduce words that do not contain consonant blends (e.g., / st /, / tr /, / pl /) until students are proficient with consonant – vowel – consonant words.
  • Begin with continuous sounds in early exercises to facilitate blending. Stop sounds may be used in final positions of words.
  • Try to introduce words in context, or words that students are familiar with.
teaching alphabetic principle5
Teaching Alphabetic Principle

4th Step – Words to Sentences

  • Use words from developed word lists before integrating into passages.
  • Connect words to text.
  • Introduce texts that are decodable.
  • Allow opportunities to practice text to develop accuracy and fluency.
  • Use sight words in text along with sounding out strategies.
successful readers
Successful Readers
  • Rely primarily on letter-sound correspondences in words rather than context or pictures to identity familiar and unfamiliar words.
  • Have reliable strategies to decode words.
  • During the alphabetic phase, students must have plenty of practice phonologically decoding the same words to become familiar with spelling patterns, so these words become automatic.
  • Pronunciations of certain letter sounds in English and Spanish may vary from speaker to speaker depending upon the speaker’s region or country of origin.
  • Small mirrors can be used to help students who are having difficulty pronouncing sounds.
  • The combination of instruction in phonological awareness and letter-sounds appears to be the most favorable for successful early reading.

Haskell, Foorman, & Swank, 1992

  • Alphabetic Principle is the understanding that all letters in the English language represent sounds and that words are read in a L to R order.
  • The Alphabetic Principle is crucial to the development of later reading success and is part of the development of reading.
word study literacy development
Word Study / Literacy Development

English LanguageArts & Reading

understandings about reading words
Understandings about Reading Words

Students should come to understand

  • Some letters can represent more than one sound
  • Different letters can represent the same sound
  • Sounds can be represented by a single letter or combination of letters
instructional word study strategies
Instructional Word Study Strategies

How do you teach word analysis?

  • Identify and blend together all of the letter-sound correspondences in words
  • Recognize high frequency and irregular words
  • Use common spelling patterns
instructional word study strategies1
Instructional Word Study Strategies
  • Use structural clues such as compound words, base words, and inflections
  • Use knowledge of word order and context to support pronunciation and confirm word meaning

**District curriculum will help discern common patterns and order of word introduction.

instructional word study strategies2
Instructional Word Study Strategies
  • Decoding
  • Word Sorting
  • Irregular Words
  • Word Walls
  • Letter Combinations
  • Spelling Patterns
  • Syllable Patterns
word study strategies
Word Study Strategies


  • Decoding is the process of converting printed words into their spoken forms by using knowledge of letter-sound correspondences and word structures.
  • The goal of decoding instruction is to provide students with word study strategies for reading words.
word study strategies1
Word Study Strategies


  • Select words that
    • Consist of previously taught letters
    • Progress from short VC and CVC words to longer words
    • Are frequently used in texts
    • Represent familiar vocabulary
word study strategies2
Word Study Strategies


  • Blend individual sounds without stopping between them
  • Follow sounding out of a word with its “fast” pronunciation
  • Move from orally sounding out words to silently “sounding out” words
word study strategies3
Word Study Strategies


  • Students begin decoding regular words when they

1. Know the sounds that letters make

      • Phonemic Awareness

2. Know a few letter-sound correspondences

      • Alphabetic Principle
  • Students say the sounds for all the letters from left to right and blend the sounds together to pronounce and read regular words.
word study strategies4
Word Study Strategies


  • Decoding requires knowledge of the structures of the language
    • Phonemic
    • Graphophonemic
    • Syllabic
    • Morphemic
concepts revisited
Concepts Revisited


  • Phonemic Awareness – The ability to hear and manipulate the sounds in spoken words, and the understanding that spoken words and syllables are made up of sequences of speech sounds

Yopp, 1992

  • Graphophonemic Awareness – making the connection between letters (graphemes) and sounds
  • Syllable – the break in a word
  • Morphemes – the smallest unit of meaning
word study strategies5
Word Study Strategies

Word Sorting

  • Provide opportunities to make, sort, and read words that consist of letter-sound correspondences they have learned in English or Spanish
  • Teachers can model and scaffold learning during lessons to help all students successfully apply newly acquired letter-sound knowledge
word study strategies6
Word Study Strategies

Word Sorting

  • During these lessons, students focus on individual phonemes in words and blending sounds together to read words
  • Sorting words during the lesson encourages students to look carefully at the way words look and sound
word study strategies7
Word Study Strategies

Irregular Words

  • Consist of some letters that do not represent their most common sounds
  • Can often be partially decoded to determine the correct pronunciation
  • Tend to be high frequency words
  • Sometimes referred to as sight words
word study strategies8
Word Study Strategies

Irregular Words

  • Teach the most frequently occurring irregular words
  • Introduce irregular words before students encounter them in stories
  • Limit the number introduced in a single lesson
word study strategies9
Word Study Strategies

Word Walls

  • Introduce and group words by different categories on a wall / board / chart
  • Help students learn to read and spell important words
word study strategies10
Word Study Strategies

Word Walls

  • Select words from reading programs, high-frequency word lists, etc.
  • Add a limited number of words gradually
  • Display in a highly visible, accessible place
word study strategies11
Word Study Strategies

Word Walls

  • Categorize words in a variety of ways
    • Alphabet (ABC order)
    • # of letters in words
    • CV, CVC, etc
  • Incorporate a variety of word wall activities
  • Encourage use of the word wall during independent reading and writing
  • Provide many opportunities for practice
word study strategies12
Word Study Strategies

Letter Combinations

  • Letter combinations are groups of consecutive letters that represent a particular sound or sounds in words
  • The most common combinations are usually taught first
word study strategies13
Word Study Strategies

Letter Combinations

  • Consonant blends – the combined sounds of two or three consonants that can occur in words.
  • Consonant digraph– a combination of consonants that represent one unique sound.
word study strategies14
Word Study Strategies

Letter Combinations

  • Vowel combinations or pairs– two adjacent vowels in the same syllable representing a single speech sound.
    • P / EA / CE – the / EA / makes one long e sound.
word study strategies15
Word Study Strategies

Spelling Patterns

  • Spelling patterns are letter sequences that frequently occur in a certain position in words.
  • Spelling patterns are also known as phonograms.
  • Words that contain the same phonogram form word families.

(/ ack / back, jack, lack, knack)

word study strategies16
Word Study Strategies

Spelling Patterns

  • Decoding by analogy to known words.
  • Students ask
    • “What words do I know that look the same?”
    • “What words do I know that end (or begin) with the same letters?”
word study strategies17
Word Study Strategies

Syllable Patterns

  • A syllable is a word or part of a word that is made with one opening of the mouth
  • Every syllable has one vowel sound
word study strategies18
Word Study Strategies

Syllable Patterns

  • Help students make generalizations about words they can already pronounce
  • Provide a strategy for pronouncing and reading unfamiliar words based upon their orthography or the way they are spelled
word study strategies19
Word Study Strategies

Syllable Patterns – Six Types

  • Closed Syllable (CVC) Consonant / Vowel / Consonant
    • Ends in at least one consonant,the vowel is short.
  • Open Syllable (CV) Consonant / Vowel
    • Ends in one vowel, the vowel is long.
word study strategies20
Word Study Strategies

Syllable Patterns – Six Types

  • Vowel – Consonant - e (VCe or CVCe) Ends in one vowel, one consonant, and a final e. The final e is silent and the vowel is long.
  • Vowel + r SyllableHas an r after the vowel, the vowel makes an unexpected sound.
word study strategies21
Word Study Strategies

Syllable Patterns – Six Types

  • Vowel Pair SyllableHas two adjacent vowels. Each vowel pair syllable must be learned individually.
  • Final Stable SyllableHas a final consonant - l - e combination or a non-phonetic but reliable unit such as -tion / shun /. The accent usually falls on the preceding syllable.
word study strategies22
Word Study Strategies
  • Compound words – two words that are put together to make a new word
    • carport
    • doorway
    • daycare
word study strategies23
Word Study Strategies
  • Inflectional endings
    • English: -s, -es, -ing, -ed
    • Spanish: -mente, -ito, -s, -es
word study strategies24
Word Study Strategies
  • Base words
    • Un / friend / ly
    • How many more can you think of?
word study strategies25
Word Study Strategies
  • Suffixes and prefixes
    • English: re-, un-, con-, -ness, -ful
word study strategies26
Word Study Strategies
  • Syntax and Context
    • Used to
      • Support word identification.
      • Confirm word meaning.

Student asks

“Does that sound right here?’

“Does that make sense?”

  • Word Study and Literacy Development is essential in the developing of Reading.
  • There are many Word Study instructional strategies that can be used to enhance word analysis skills.
reading fluency
Reading Fluency

English LanguageArts & Reading

what is fluency
What is Fluency?
  • Fluency is a combination of reading speed, accuracy and prosody
  • Automaticity = comprehension
fluency automaticity
Fluency & Automaticity


  • is a precursor to effective fluency
  • implies a quick and accurate level of recognition, such as the ability to quickly and accurately associate sounds with letters in order to read words
  • is achieved through many opportunities for practice on a regular basis

**it’s like driving a car-you do it automatically.

why is fluency important
Why is Fluency Important?
  • Fluent readers are able to focus their attention on understanding the text and are therefore better able to interpret the text, make connections and analyze materials.

NAEP, 1995

why is fluency important1
Why is Fluency Important?
  • Non-fluent readers must focus their energies on decoding and accessing the meaning of individual words, thus leaving little attention free for comprehension.

Samuels and Laberge, 1974

fluency and comprehension
Fluency and Comprehension
  • Fluent word recognition is the key to good reading comprehension.
  • Fluency is related to listening and reading comprehension, vocabulary development, and motivation to read.
assess fluency rates and levels
Assess Fluency Ratesand Levels
  • Informal and Formal assessments can be used to determine a child’s fluency rate so that appropriate instruction can be developed and designed.
fluency progress
Fluency Progress
  • If the goal is to improve fluency -then students MUST chose books and passages at their Independent Level so they can practice.
  • Fluency should be assessed weekly for those readers who are struggling.
  • Monitor Fluency Progress.
instructional fluency strategies
Instructional Fluency Strategies
  • lots of independent reading at their independent reading level – SSR
  • repeated readings
  • taped assisted reading
  • echo reading
  • shared reading
  • choral reading
  • partner reading
  • readers’ theater
  • The understanding that Fluency is connected with Reading.
  • Without Fluency there would be little comprehension.
  • Fluency Rate - how many words are read per minute.
  • Fluency Levels - the levels at which a child reads.
    • Independent Level is the level to develop fluency.

English LanguageArts & Reading

what is comprehension
What is Comprehension?
  • Understanding what you have read
  • Learning from what you read and applying information
  • It is more than just asking questions to assess student understanding
how do we instruct for comprehension
How Do We Instruct for Comprehension?
  • “Commonly, the instructional procedures for developing comprehension are to simply have students read material and answer questions . . . . However, reading and answering is TESTING comprehension not TEACHING comprehension.”

Bell, N. (1991) Visualizing and verbalizing for language comprehension and thinking. Paso Robles, CA: Academy of Reading Publications.

assessment drives instruction
Assessment Drives Instruction
  • Determining what students know and don’t know informs your instruction.
  • Reading Inventories such as the TPRI and the TeJas Lee can be used as a diagnostic tool to help drive your instruction.
  • There is a comprehension section of the TPRI which we will examine later.
teaching comprehension strategies
Teaching Comprehension Strategies
  • You must EXPLICITY teach comprehension strategies
    • What a given comprehension strategy is, why it’s important and when to use it
    • Which comprehension strategies work best in certain instances
    • How to apply different strategies to different types of texts and reading situations
      • Expository and Narrative texts
comprehension strategies
Comprehension Strategies
  • Teacher Read Alouds
  • Different Types of Texts
  • Before Reading
  • During Reading
  • After Reading
  • Graphic Organizers
  • Questioning Strategies
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Comprehension Strategies

Read Alouds

  • Comprehension strategies can be demonstrated and modeled during teacher read alouds.
  • All students, regardless of age and level of reading, need daily opportunities to hear good narratives and interesting expository books read aloud.
different types of texts
Different Types of Texts

Narrative Texts

  • Tell stories
  • Follow a familiar story structure
  • Include short stories, folktales, myths, fables, autobiographies, biographies, fantasies, historical fiction, mysteries, science fiction, plays
  • Expository Texts
  • Informative
  • Present information in different ways
  • Provide a framework for comprehension of content-area textbooks
  • Include informational books, content-area textbooks, newspapers, magazines, brochures, catalogues
improving comprehension
Improving Comprehension
  • Asking questions
  • Having meaningful discussions
  • Using graphic organizers
  • Can help students develop and extend meaning and make connections to personal experiences before, during, and after reading
instructional comprehension strategies
Instructional Comprehension Strategies
  • The teacher teaches students how to monitor their understanding and comprehension by implementing
    • Before Reading Strategies
    • During Reading Strategies
    • After Reading Strategies
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

Before Reading Strategies

  • Prepare and make connections and predictions by activating prior knowledge
    • Use K-W-L chart
k w l charts
K-W-L Charts

Used with expository texts

What are some ways you use K-W-L Charts with your students?

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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

During Reading

  • Monitor understanding and correct any difficulties
    • Use Fix Up Strategies – these are strategies that students can learn to use to monitor their understanding
      • Example – Get the Gist
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

Get the Gist

  • To identify the main idea / gist of the paragraph.
    • Read 1 paragraph at a time.
    • Determine the main idea by.
      • Naming the who or what?
      • The most important thing that happened to the who or what?
      • Put it together in 10 words or less.
    • Tell a partner.
    • Write it down.
    • Create a summary - Do this for each paragraph.
    • Repeat with next paragraph - 5 paragraphs.
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

During Reading– Asking Questions

  • Each group is to develop 1 question (broad) to be used as a fix up strategy. Post all the questions. Students are to refer to these questions as they read to monitor their understanding.
  • Sample question – Does this make sense?
  • You have just developed a reading center!
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

Before Reading Questions

  • What does the title tell me about the story?
  • Do I know anything about this topic already?
  • Are there any pictures? What can the pictures tell me?
  • What is my goal for reading this passage?
    • What do I want to learn?
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

During Reading Questions

  • Does this sentence make sense? Does this paragraph make sense so far?
  • What have I learned?
  • Do I still have questions?
    • Write down the questions in the margin, or on sticky notes and place beside the area that is confusing, or the area that you may still have questions about.
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

After Reading Questions

  • Did I learn any new words?
    • Write them down in my dictionary.
  • What was this mainly about? Can I summarize this and get the gist?
  • What was the most important thing that I learned?
    • Did I reach my goal?
  • Is there anything else I want to learn about?
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

During Reading

  • Other instructional strategies to use during reading
    • Think – pair - share
    • Turn to your neighbor
    • Response cards
    • Pinch cards
  • Partner reading
  • Choral reading
  • Echo Reading
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

After Reading

  • Provide summary of what was read and make connections. This helps students
    • Identify what was most important.
    • Make inferences.
    • Remember what they read.
  • Put all your “get the gists” together to make a complete summary.
  • Fill in the L of the K-W-L chart.
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

Graphic Organizers

  • Helps those visual learners connect to information
  • Activates prior knowledge
  • Helps students remember important elements
  • Guides students to think about a passage in an organized manner
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies

Graphic Organizers

Some different types of graphic organizers include

  • Webs
  • K-W-L Charts
  • Maps (e.g., brainstorming, story, concept, semantic)
  • Venn diagrams
  • Timelines
putting it all together
Putting It All Together
  • Did they understand what they read?
  • Use questioning strategies to monitor comprehension understanding during the reading.
  • Students can monitor their understanding by using the QAR question strategies.
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies
  • Be Critical Thinkers and teach students to ask relevant questions.
  • Introduce QAR – this is a questioning technique that transfers the control of questioning from the teacher to the students.
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Instructional Comprehension Strategies
  • QAR - Question Answer Response
    • Level 1 questions – the answers are right there in the passage.
    • Level 2 questions – the answers are found in different parts of the text.
    • Level 3 questions – the answer is mostly in the passage and partly in the reader’s mind.
questions responses1
Questions & Responses

Ask questions before, during, and after reading


  • Explicit
    • Who? What? When? Where?
  • Responses
    • Recall facts, events, and names.
    • Focus on information in the text.
    • Rephrase text that has just been read.
  • Complex
  • Implicit
    • How? Why? What if?
  • Responses
    • Move away from what can be seen on the page.
    • Analyze and elaborate information.
    • Focus on thinking about what has been read and prior knowledge (making inferences).
    • Make connections.
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Assessment Drives Instruction
  • Did they understand what they read?
  • If not, go back and determine what they need to work on
    • Explicit / Implicit Questions
    • Fluency
    • Word Recognition
    • Alphabetic Principle
  • Comprehension is the goal in reading.
  • Comprehension is NOT just answering questions.
  • Effective comprehension instruction helps students understand what they read to become strategic, metacognitive readers.

English LanguageArts & Reading

balanced literacy components
Balanced Literacy Components
  • Oral Development
  • Phonological Awareness
  • Alphabetic Principle
  • Word Study/Literature Development
  • Fluency
  • Comprehension