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Teaching Reading Texts

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  1. Teaching Reading Texts May Lee maymtlee@gmail.com

  2. Types of Reading Textsin Course Books • Words • Scarf, cap, gloves, snow, jeans, T-shirt, sneakers • Extended Texts (paragraph, passage) • “What can you do?” (PEP Book 5A) • “I have a pen pal” (PEP Book 6A) • “The Ugly Duckling” • “The North Wind and the Sun” • Sentences • Father washes the children’s T-shirts. • Mother cooks breakfast for the children. • My mother is a dancer. • I can sweep the floor. 2

  3. Texts in books – Lower Primary Example: salty listen sweet yummy hungry sandwich rabbit boy girl read smile eat hard interesting milk desk story books eggs 3

  4. Texts in books – Lower PrimaryExample: Pri.3 New Starting Point – Unit 32 • I want to play outdoors. • I wear my cap, scarf, gloves, coat, jeans and sneakers. • What about you? • What do you wear in winter? What kind of text is this? “Words”, “sentences” or “an extended text”? How is an extended text different from a group of words or a group of sentences? Extended texts are made up of sentences that are connected, and together present a central idea (e.g. a story, a description, a piece of information.) 4

  5. Purposes of teaching reading (1) Reading Skills --- Focus on small parts of language (word level),e.g. pronouncing & spelling the words; recognising the meaning of the words, usage, etc. (2) Reading Strategies --- Focus on text information (sentence & paragraph level), e.g. gathering, evaluating and using text information to construct meaning. Plus • (3) Other language skills --- Focus on developing the skills of Speaking, Listening, and Writing, and further reading. • (Activities after reading, beyond reading) 6

  6. Workshop activity 1: How would you teach this text? One morning, Rabbit is very hungry. He sees a lot of food on the table. Everything looks very yummy. He jumps on the table and tastes the food one by one. He eats an egg, but it’s too dry. He eats a sandwich, but it’s too salty. He eats an ice cream, but it’s too sweet. He drinks some milk, but it tastes funny. He doesn’t like any of them. At last, he went into the garden... 7

  7. What are your teaching objectives? • What reading skills? E.g. enabling pps to learn and use some vocabulary. (Types of food & their tastes…) • What reading strategies? • How about other skills (speaking, listening, writing)? 8

  8. While-reading stage (1) Exercises that focus on: (1) Reading Skills – Word level --- Small parts of language What would you teach? 9

  9. While-reading stage (2) Exercises that focus on: (2) Reading Strategies -- Text information What would you teach? 10

  10. Post-reading “Rabbit’s favourite food” Exercises that focus on: (3) Other language skills -- Sp, L, W What would you teach? 11

  11. Pre-reading stage • Arouses pps’ interest and, if necessary, prepares pps for some of the difficult words and the background to the text. • E.g. What kinds of food does Rabbit like to eat? Will he eat carrots in this story? • T may ask some prediction questions to help pps focus their attention. • E.g. Will he eat carrots? Or will he eat other types of food? • Don’t over-do this part!!! (How much time will you spend on this?) 12

  12. While-reading Possible teaching points: Understanding words, phrases, sentences • Pronunciation – Phonics, reading aloud • Using context to teach: word referents – e.g. Everything; pronouns – e.g. he, it,…; word meaning: yummy, sweet, salty; vocabulary: types of food. • Word formation/spelling: suffix “y” e.g. yummy, salty, funny… • Using dictionary • Using punctuation • Usage: … He doesn’t like any of them. (…some of them, one of them, two of them…); use of conjunction “but”. Exercises that focus on: (1) Reading Skills -- Small parts of language You need not do all of these, and not all at the beginning of the lesson. 13

  13. While-reading Exercises that focus on: (2) Reading Strategies -- Text information T may ask questions and/or conduct activities. • What types of food does Rabbit taste? • Why doesn’t he like the egg? • Why doesn’t he like the milk? • Where does Rabbit go at last? • Write a sentence to describe each picture in the worksheet (e.g. Rabbit eats an apple, but it tastes sour.) You don’t have to complete all these before the next section. (2a) Literal/Factual level 14

  14. While-reading Exercises that focus on: (2) Reading Strategies -- Text information T may ask questions and/or conduct activities. • Why does the writer say “Everything looks yummy, and not everything “is” yummy? • Why does Rabbit “jump” on the table? • Why does Rabbit find the food dry, salty, etc. Are these types of food really dry and salty? • Why does Rabbit go into the garden at the end of the story? Can you finish the story? • Guess the title of this story. (2b) Interpretive level 15

  15. While-reading & Post-reading stages Exercises that focus on: (2) Reading Strategies -- Text information T may ask questions and/or conduct activities. • Is Rabbit too choosy? Is Rabbit naughty? • Is it difficult to keep a rabbit as a pet? Have you or your friends kept a pet rabbit before? What is your/their experience? • Do you like Rabbit? Do you like this story? • Write a new ending for the story. (2c) Applied level 16

  16. Reading Strategiesfor different Levels of Comprehension • (2a) Literal / factual level strategies • reading the lines • factual information • get the gist • work out meaning of unknown words • identify main & supporting details • get the facts • (2b) Interpretive level strategies • reading between the lines – hidden meaning • inferring meaning • supporting conclusions with evidence • distinguish points of view • detect tone & mood • infer intention, attitude & feeling • compare & contrast, sequential order, cause & effect, fact & opinion • (2c) Applied level strategies • reading beyond the lines • reacting to the text --- • making judgement; drawing conclusions; evaluating; using imagination 17

  17. Post-reading stage Exercises that focus on: (3) Other language skills -- Sp, L, W, more R Table 1: • Complete the table (This belongs to “Reading strategy”). • Retell the story with the help of the table. • Construct another table about your favourite food, or favourite food of Parrots (or other animals/pets). • Write another story. (Parallel writing) • Role-play the Rabbit/ the Parrot/ “yourself”… 18

  18. Table 2: My favourite food Table 3: Parrot’s favourite food 19

  19. Teaching the reading of a textThree stages of the lesson Pre-reading • arouse student’s interest • give necessary background While-reading • guide the reading, using questions or activities. Post-reading • strengthen learning, using questions or follow-up activities 20

  20. Reading Skills & Strategies & the 3 Stages of the lesson Pre-reading stage Arouse interest Give background Previewing, predicting (1) Reading Skills (word level) --- Focus on small parts of language, • (2a) Literal/factual level strategies • reading the lines • factual information While-reading stage T guides the reading • (2b) Interpretive level strategies • reading between the lines • inferring meaning • (2c) Applied level strategies • reading beyond the lines • reacting to the text Post-reading stage Follow-up activities Recycle the language (3) Other Language Skills – Sp, L, W, (R) 21

  21. Workshop activity 2: Examine this text from 新起點 P6 Book A. What reading skills/ strategies and other language skills can you teach with it? Animals are people’s friends (Adapted) Lisa was an American girl. One day in 1990, when she was walking home from the office, she saw a small gray kitten under a car. It was very thin and weak. She was sorry for the kitten and took it home. In the first week, Lisa got up every two hours during the night to feed it because it was so weak. After a year, the kitten grew into a big beautiful cat. She had long gray fur and green eyes. Lisa called her Precious. 22

  22. One night, when Lisa was sleeping, she heard a terrible sound. Precious was meowing and clawing at the door. Lisa felt very tired and didn’t want to get up. But Precious meowed and clawed more loudly. It even pushed the door open, jumped onto Lisa’s bed and bit her ear very hard. When Lisa got up she realized that her room was full of smoke. Her house was on fire! She quickly held Precious in her arms and ran out of the house. Precious had saved Lisa’s life! 23

  23. Workshop activity 2:“Animals are people’s friends” • Objectives? • Pre-reading stage • arouse pps' interest? • provide the necessary background, etc.? • prepare pps for difficult words – is it necessary? 24

  24. To help pps understand words, phrases, sentences Do some of these in the pre- or while-reading stage. • Pronunciation – Phonics, reading aloud • Using context to teach: word meaning: Precious, realised; vocabulary: words about cats: fur, meow, claw (n. & v.). • Usage: It was very thin and weak…It was so weak; It even pushed the door open. • Word formation/spelling: beautiful, terrible • Using dictionary “Animals are people’s friends” Exercises that focus on: (1) Reading Skills -- Small parts of language You need not do all of these, and not all at the beginning of the lesson. 25

  25. “Animals are people’s friends” Exercises that focus on: (2) Reading Strategies -- Text information T may ask questions and/or conduct activities. • When did Lisa find the cat? • Sequence the scrambled sentences. • Match the pictures with the correct sentence. • Why did Lisa take the cat home? • Did Lisa take good care of Precious? What did she do? • Why did Precious claw Lisa’s bedroom door? • What did Lisa do when she got up? You don’t have to complete all these before the next section. (2a) Literal/Factual level 26

  26. “Animals are people’s friends” Exercises that focus on: (2) Reading Strategies -- Text information T may ask questions and/or conduct activities. • What do you know about Lisa? (How old is she? What does she do? Who does she live with? What is her personality?) • Why did Lisa call the cat Precious? • Did Lisa love Precious? How do you know? What did she do to Precious? (2b) Interpretive level 27

  27. “Animals are people’s friends” Exercises that focus on: (2) Reading Strategies -- Text information T may ask questions and/or conduct activities. • Do you like Lisa & Precious? Why? • Do you like this story? • Do you think animals are people’s good friends? Can you give some examples of animals who are people’s friends? Can you think of animals who are not friendly to people? • Do you want to have a cat as you pet? (2c) Applied level 28

  28. “Animals are people’s friends” Exercises that focus on: (3) Other language skills -- Sp, L, W • Retell the story with the help of the pictures. • Write the story from the point of view of Precious. • Do you know about how to take care of cats/dogs/other pets? Write down a few points and read them to your partner/group. • Read up a story about a pet and tell your classmates. • E.g. a Panda in Ocean Park (HK) bit the care-taker (2009?); a dog tried to save another dog knocked down by a car in the USA. 29

  29. Teaching or Testing? What’s the difference? • Testing : • Teaching : 30

  30. A Primary 5 Test(Adapted) My name is Amy. I usually get up at 6:30 in the morning and practise kungfu with my brother. On the weekend I often go hiking with my family. I like spring best. It's windy and warm. I like winter, too, because my birthday is in December, and I like playing with snow. Today my parents are going shopping. My brother is swinging in the garden. I'm watching TV. Do you want to be my friend? My QQ is 408981124, and my telephone number is 6678115. If you are asked to teach this text, how would you do it? 31

  31.  Test questions: 1. Amy often goes hiking______. A. on Sunday   B. in spring        C. on the weekend. 2. Which is Amy's favourite season?  A. Spring. B. Winter.         C. Spring and winter. 3. Why does Amy like winter?    --Because_______. A. her birthday is in December     B. she can play with snow      C. A and B 4. Is Amy's brother going shopping?     A. Yes, he is.    B. No, he isn't.      C. Yes, he is swinging in the garden. 5. What's Amy's telephone number? A. 408981124 B. 6678115         C. 408981124 and 6678115 What kind of reading skills/ strategies are being tested here? 32

  32. You may teach the text using these questions/activities: • Underline the activities Amy does. • Is Amy an active girl or a quiet girl? • Which country do you think Amy lives in? • (a) Thailand (b) Canada (c) Singapore • Give the main idea of each paragraph. • Why does Amy talk about these things? Who is she talking/writing to? • Would you like to be Amy’s friend? Why? • Write a letter to Amy about yourself. • Let’s learn some useful words/ expressions, grammar points, pronunciation… 2a 2b 2b 2a 2b 2c 3 1 What kind of reading skills/ strategies... ? 33

  33. Teaching or Testing? • Testing : To find outwhether pps understand the language in the text, and know how to use the language skills/strategies learnt. T does not help pps. • Teaching : To help pupils learn through doing the exercises & activities … • helping pupils learn to read & use other skills • demonstrating, modelling the reading and reasoning for pupils • describing, explaining • generally guiding pupils to construct meaning from the text step by step • pupils learn through the activities 34

  34. From English Lang Curriculum Guide: P1 to P6 (2004) EDB, HK 35

  35. 36

  36. Task: Examine the reading exercises in your course books. In general, do they focus on • Reading Skills -- Small parts of language • Reading Strategies -- Text information • Other language skills -- Sp, L, W • Help pupils • learn new language. • revise learnt language • learn new skills/stategies • practice learnt skills • develop interest in learning English • have exposure to good English (input) What should you do to help your pupils learn English more effectively? Introduce good books to pupils Promote a reading culture 37

  37. What objectives can the mentioned activities achieve? • Provide more (language) skills practice (listening, reading, writing, speaking) • Pronunciation / Phonics practice • Vocabulary & grammar practice • Provide enjoyment,challenge • Develop interest in reading & learning • Practicing reasoning / logical thinking • Develop imagination / creativity / judgment • Develop artistic dimension • Moral education – right & wrong / sympathy / being helpful / being responsible • Develop self confidence, collaboration & self-management skills • Enhance relationship with parents • Understanding text structure • Understanding writer strategy From the Hong Kong Curriculum Guide

  38. English Language Teaching – Useful References http://www.edb.gov.hk/cd http://www.edb.gov.hk/index.aspx?langno=1&nodeID=2770 www.teachit.co.uk/attachments/1060.pdf 39