A key question we as teachers should stop and ask ourselves is …”are my students focusing on learning to read? Or, have they become automatic in their reading, to the point where they can read to learn?” Once students can focus less on their actual decoding of the text, they can let loose and have fun with reading comprehension. This is when learning becomes even more interesting.
We chose to switch it up a bit this week, and focus on this engaging (and of course multisensory) strategy that will guide students in understanding key concepts.
Make it Multisensory …
Good readers ask themselves questions. Teaching questioning techniques force students to STOP and THINK! Pick any sort of text for students to practice this strategy. Later on, students will automatically tap into this activity while reading. We want to make sure, however, that reading material is “just right.” Not too easy, not too challenging.
In Summary Builder, a color-coding system is used to provide a multi-sensory tool for students to tap into while gathering information. For example, while reading, if the student comes across who the main character is, they would place a pink flag (sticky note) next to the name. If the student finds the answer to a conflict, they would place a flag/sticky next to the part in the book that gave the answer of what the conflict was.
When students are done reading the passage or chapter, have them pause to jot down notes and gather their information. They will have to go back to their flag/sticky and jot down the information they found in the colored boxes on the top half of the handout. Students then use their gathered information to formulate a summary which is written on the bottom half of the handout.
Students will learn to associate the following colors with corresponding question words:
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Written by Angelina Spiteri-Bender
Angelina is an Educational Consultant and Instructor with Brainspring Educator Academy.
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