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Reading in English

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Title: Reading in English


1
  • Reading

2
1. Reading
  • Reading is one of the four basic skills needed to
    gain competence in mastering a language.
  • It is a written receptive skill.
  • To achieve full comprehension and interaction
    between the information given and the readers
    expectations is necessary.

3
2. Reasons for reading and text selection
  • The ability to read effectively is fundamental
    for survival in our western society.
  • Whenever we read, we have a specific purpose in
    mind.
  • Sometimes, we read simply to get the gist of the
    text or to locate a concrete piece of
    information.

4
2.2. Reasons for reading and text selection
Reasons for reading Text selection
To get information or search for information Travel brochures Train timetables Bus schedule Public signs Weather forecasts Menus Internet web sites
To satisfy to curiosity about a topic Magazine articles Newspaper editorials Advertisements Internet
To follow instructions To know how to use a game Recipes Maps
5
2.2. Reasons for reading and text selection
Reasons for reading Text selection
To keep in touch Postcards Letters Notes Messages Invitations Emails
To find out when and where Announcements Programmes
6
2.2. Reasons for reading and text selection
  • Texts should be adapted to the learners
    cognitive development.
  • Texts should cover a wide variety of topics in
    order to reflect the diversity of interests
    present in the classroom.
  • Texts should enhance motivation and promote
    self-esteem.

7
2.2. Reasons for reading and text selection
  • Texts should reflect situations where the learner
    can activate his/her schemata and enrich the
    interpretation.
  • Texts should introduce some of the most important
    cultural references of the target language.
  • The selected texts should be the result of a
    needs analysis.
  • By means of a needs analysis the teacher can
    gather a great deal of valuable information which
    will result in a more accurate selection of the
    reading material.

8
2.3. Types of knowledge required to make sense of
the text
  • Six types of knowledge likely to help the reader
    to make sense of the text

Types of knowledge Examples
Syntactic knowledge Position of articles Position of auxiliary verbs Position of adjectives and adverbs
Morphological knowledge Word formation (affixation, compounding) Cohesive devices
General world knowledge Background knowledge
Sociocultural knowledge Cultural references
Topic knowledge Previous ideas related to the content
Genre knowledge Science fantasy novel Tale Poems
9
3. CHARACTERISTICS OF WRITTEN LANGUAGE
Permanence The reader can access the information in the written form as many times as needed. Oral language, on the contrary, vanishes after being uttered.
Processing time The processing time needed to decode the information is greater and readers can read at their own rate.
Distance The context in which the text is written is different from that in which it is read. Consequently, readers interpret the written material using their background knowledge and trying to minimise the effects of the passing of time and sociocultural conventions. Besides, the reader cannot confront the author and question him/her about the text.
Orthography Written language is materialised through graphemes. These are accompanied by punctuation marks, pictures or charts. Thus, it may be more difficult to interpret written language than oral language since this is enriched with suprasegmental features (stress, rhythm, juncture, intonation, pauses, volume, voice quality settings) and non-verbal language (gestures).
  • Differences in comparison to spoken language.

Complexity Written language tends to have longer clauses and more complex sentences than spoken language.
Vocabulary Written language usually presents a more varied and a more formal lexical register. The writer makes use of more precise lexical items since he/she has more processing time and lower-frequency words often appear.
Formality Written language makes use of conventionalised forms which enable the reader to recognise the type of text. In addition to this, a written text presents some rhetorical devices which the reader should know in advance in order to make sense of it. In Browns words (2001306) conventions like paragraph topics a logical order for, say, comparing and contrasting something . openings and closings and a preference for non-redundancy and subordination clauses, etc.
10
4. APPROACHES TO READING IN A FOREIGN/SECOND
LANGUAGE
  • 4.1. Bottom-up process Based upon the assumption
    that the reader starts from decoding the most
    specific levels of the language before grasping
    the most general ones.
  • The reader first recognises individual letters,
    forms words, these in turn make up phrases, then
    clauses, sentences, texts
  • Later on, he/she makes use of his/her linguistic
    mechanisms to make some sort of sense of the
    data.

11
4. APPROACHES TO READING IN A FOREIGN/SECOND
LANGUAGE
  • Numerous activities to develop the learners
    bottom-up strategies and subsequently allow
    him/her to process the text in this way.
  • a) Identifying words by letter combinations
  • b) Difficult sound clusters
  • c) Re-ordering scrambled words and matching
  • d) Discriminating minimal pair sounds
  • e) Reading and stress

12
4. APPROACHES TO READING IN A FOREIGN/SECOND
LANGUAGE
  • 4.2. Top-down process
  • The process starts from the higher levels of
    processing and proceeds to use the lower levels
    selectively.
  • Background knowledge plays a key role since the
    reader combines what he/she already knows with
    the new information from the text to achieve a
    personal interpretation.

13
4. APPROACHES TO READING IN A FOREIGN/SECOND
LANGUAGE
  • Activities
  • a) Deducing from context.
  • Can you deduce from context the meaning of
    resort, hike, and sunbathers? Are these words
    essential for the comprehension of the passage?
    Why?

What a marvellous coastline! This is an excellent
resort for a holiday. People can hike on the
rocky hills and, if they want to, they can swim
or do water sports in the blue sea. A holiday
here suits those visitors who like the mountains,
and those who like the beach. There is plenty of
vegetation on the hills and a small sandy beach
for sunbathers!
14
4. APPROACHES TO READING IN A FOREIGN/SECOND
LANGUAGE
  • b) Relating written text to general world
    knowledge.
  • Relate his/her world knowledge or background
    knowledge to the written information from the
    text.
  • c) Drawing inferences.
  • The reader not only needs to understand
    explicitly stated information but also implicit
    messages.

15
4. APPROACHES TO READING IN A FOREIGN/SECOND
LANGUAGE
  • 4.3. Interactive process
  • Eclectic approach The reader, depending on
    his/her purposes, the type of text, etc.,
    activates different strategies which shift from
    bottom-up to top-down and vice-versa. This has
    come to be known as interactive reading.

16
5. COMMON EUROPEAN FRAMEWORK OF REFERENCE FOR
LANGUAGES THE READING SKILL
PROFICIENT USER C2 The reader can read without difficulty almost all forms of texts, including abstract, structurally or linguistically complex texts such as manuals, specialised articles and literary works.
PROFICIENT USER C1 The reader can understand long and complex factual and literary texts, appreciating distinctions of style. The reader can understand specialised articles and long technical instructions, even when they are not related to his field.
17
5. COMMON EUROPEAN FRAMEWORK OF REFERENCE FOR
LANGUAGES THE READING SKILL
INDEPENDENT USER B2 The reader can read articles and reports connected with contemporary problems in which the writers adopt particular attitudes or viewpoints. The reader can understand contemporary literary prose (short stories and popular novels).
INDEPENDENT USER B1 The reader can understand texts that consist mainly of high frequency everyday or job-related language. The reader can understand the description of events, feelings and wishes in personal letters.
18
5. COMMON EUROPEAN FRAMEWORK OF REFERENCE FOR
LANGUAGES THE READING SKILL
BASIC USER A2 The reader can read very short, simple texts. The reader can find specific, predictable information in simple everyday material such as advertisements, prospectuses, menus and timetables. The reader can understand short simple personal letters.
BASIC USER A1 The reader can understand familiar names, words and very simple sentences, for example on notices and posters or in catalogues.
19
6. STYLES OF READING APPLICABLE TO THE READING
CLASS
  • Reading aloud or reading silently.
  • Silent reading
  • scanning,
  • skimming,
  • intensive and
  • extensive.

20
6.1. Reading Aloud
  • FOR
  • In the first years of Primary education,
    storytelling plays an important role in the
    process of learning.
  • More effective if the story is told (or read)
    aloud due to the fact that learners become more
    involved and consequently more motivated.
  • Students can show that they recognise written and
    spoken forms and the relationship between form
    and meaning.
  • At early and intermediate levels it can be used
    to check bottom-up processing skills or simply
    pronunciation.

21
6.1. Reading Aloud
  • AGAINST.
  • It is not a very authentic activity.
  • It is a boring activity because while one student
    is reading, the others can easily lose attention.
  • It is not an interactive activity because
    students only have to recite.

22
6.2. Silent Reading
  • The most common and natural type of reading.
  • Different goals can be pursued depending on the
    predetermined purpose of reading

23
6.2. Silent Reading
  • 6.2.1. Scanning Search of specific information
    within a text relevant dates, numbers in a
    directory, times on a timetable or key concepts
    in an academic text.
  • 6.2.2. Skimming
  • Very common in everyday life used to get a
    global impression of the content of a text (the
    gist of the text).
  • Requires a definite reading competence because it
    implies an overall view of the text.
  • Develops students self-confidence since they
    obtain a lot of information without needing much
    reading.

24
6.2.3. Intensive
  • Focuses on linguistic and content accuracy.
  • It is very important in some educational contexts
    because it is used to exemplify different aspects
    of the lexical, syntactic and discourse systems.
  • Full understanding of the literal meaning
    presented in the written passage.

25
6.2.4. Extensive
  • Oriented towards grasping a general understanding
    of the text for the purpose of enjoyment or
    learning.
  • Texts are usually long such as books or articles
    and reading them takes extended periods of time.
  • Extensive reading is not usually performed during
    class time but it is known that this activity
    helps students to improve their reading
    abilities.

26
7. AN EXTENSIVE READING PROGRAMME FOR CHILDREN
  • 7.1. Goals for an extensive reading programme
  • Take into account institutional goals and
    expectations for learning (students goals,
    language abilities, L1 and L2 reading
    experiences, students motivations and attitudes
    toward reading in general and particular goals of
    the curriculum).
  • Plan reading curricula in relation to specific
    goals (hours of instruction per week, available
    resources, etc.), topics, texts and tasks.

Curriculum
27
7. AN EXTENSIVE READING PROGRAMME FOR CHILDREN
  • Select appropriate text materials and supporting
    resources according to levels of difficulty.
  • Diversify students reading experiences (reading
    in different places class, lab, library or home
    reading for different purposes).

28
7. AN EXTENSIVE READING PROGRAMME FOR CHILDREN
  • Work with texts within a pre-, during- and
    post-reading framework.
  • Recognise the complex nature of reading through
    meaningful instructions (vocabulary development,
    careful reading of the texts, awareness of text
    structure and discourse organisation, the use of
    graphic organisers to support comprehension,
    strategic reading, student motivation and
    integrated-skills tasks).

29
7.2 Types of texts
  • Authentic texts refer to readings which have not
    been adapted or modified in any way for teaching
    purposes.
  • Pedagogic texts are readings that have been
    especially written for the language classroom
  • Adapted texts or Graded Readers aim to facilitate
    the language and content of the text in order to
    make it more accessible to the language learner.

30
7.3. Materials
  • 7.4. Chart for keeping track of students readings

STUDENTS NAME DATE OF READING TITLE BRIEF SUMMARY WHAT DID YOU LIKE THE MOST? WHAT DID YOU LIKE THE LEAST? WHICH CHARACTER DID YOU IDENTIFY WITH?
31
8. TASKS TO DEVELOP READING SKILLS
  • 8.1. Tasks before reading.
  • To introduce the topic of reading and to activate
    schemata, that is, previous world knowledge.
  • The teacher may also decide to introduce the
    structural items (vocabulary, discourse markers)

32
8.1. Tasks before reading
  • Five main goals of pre-reading instruction
  • it enables the reader to access background
    knowledge
  • it stimulates student interest
  • it provides specific information needed for
    successful comprehension
  • it sets up student expectations
  • it models strategies that students can use later
    on their own

33
8.1. Tasks before reading
PRE-READING TASKS AGE RANGE SUGGESTED
Identifying the topic of the text From 7 years onward
Anticipating and predicting possible information to be included From 11 years onward
Remembering what kind of information he/she is asked to extract From 9 years onward
Checking his/her assumptions and background knowledge the text should be related to the learners own knowledge From 9 years onward
Exploring key vocabulary. From 7 years onward
Using any available visual support (accompanying diagram, picture, photo, table) From 6 years onward
Reflecting on or reviewing information from previously read texts in light of the topic of the text. From 11 years onward
34
8.2. Tasks during reading
WHILE READING TASKS AGE RANGE SUGGESTED
Following the spelling Understanding the punctuation Reading in word-groups Deducing the meaning and use of unfamiliar lexical items, through understanding a) word formation and b) contextual clues Understanding information stated explicitly Making inferences Understanding figurative language Understanding the communicative function of sentences Understanding relations within the sentence Moving from phrase to phrase and sentence to sentence (understanding the techniques of sentence linking, etc) Understanding relations between parts of a text through lexical and grammatical cohesion devices Distinguishing the main idea from supporting details Extracting salient points to summarise Understanding headings, numbers, different font/print types (e.g. bold print) Skimming to obtain the gist, or a general impression of the text Scanning, to obtain specific information Using reference works (dictionaries, glossaries) appropriately Distinguishing opinions from facts Looking for answers to questions posed during pre-reading tasks Writing predictions of what will come next From 6 years onward From 6 years onward From 6 years onward From 8 years onward From 8 years onward From 9 years onward From 10 years onward From 10 years onward From 10 years onward From 10 years onward From 11 years onward From 9 years onward From 9 years onward From 8 years onward From 11 years onward From 11 years onward From 9 years onward From 11 years onward From 9 years onward From 9 years onward
35
8.3. Tasks after reading
  • Post-reading instruction extends ideas and
    information contained in the text. It also
    focuses on ensuring that the main ideas have been
    perfectly grasped and understood.

POST-READING TASKS AGE RANGE
Eliciting readers own interpretations Eliciting reasons to justify their point of views Relating the content to other reading (intertextuality) Summarising the content Proposing information transfer tasks Answering comprehension questions Completing a graphic organiser From 9 years onward From 9 years onward From 11 years onward From 8 years onward From 9 years onward From 8 years onward From 8 years onward
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