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Best Practices in Secondary Reading Instruction


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Title: Best Practices in Secondary Reading Instruction

Best Practices in Secondary Reading Instruction
  • Kevin Smith, M. Ed.
  • Reading Specialist, 6-12

from Reading Instruction through Strategy
Enhancement (RISE)
  • by Evan Lefsky, Ph.D.
  • Executive Director,
  • Just Read, Florida!

Questions for Reflection
  • Are all my students provided with many books they
    can read and want to read?
  • When my students read/write, do they get to write
    about what they know and care about?
  • Are my students given plenty of time to explore
    topics and themes through reading and writing?
  • When I want my students to read/write content
    information, do I show them how to do it?
  • Do all of my students get opportunities to
    demonstrate and use their strengths in reading
    and writing, or do reading and writing activities
    in my class only accentuate their weaknesses?

Challenges of FCAT
  • Endurance
  • Reading and writing for 160 minutes
  • Text Length average900 words
  • No connection to text

Components of RISE
  • Independent Reading Practice
  • Fast-Paced Decoding Practice (Especially
    polysyllabic words)
  • Text Sets
  • Explicit Comprehension Instruction
  • Instruction supported by reading coach

Research-Based Reading Classroom (Guthrie, 2002)
  • Which factors affect FCAT reading scores?

Research-Based Reading Classroom
  • Which components should we focus on?

Classroom Setup
(No Transcript)
Whole Group Instruction
  • 15-20 minutes daily
  • Teacher modeling of reading strategies
  • Focus on comprehension, vocabulary, and fluency

  • Four groups of five students
  • Four stations
  • Two to three rotations each day
  • Each rotation is 15-20 minutes

Teacher Led Group
  • Reinforce whole group instruction
  • Specific areas of student need

Independent Work
  • Research
  • Listening Centers
  • Content area connections
  • Individual assignments based on needs
    demonstrated through small group instruction
  • Reciprocal Teaching
  • Text-based discussion

  • FCAT Explorer
  • Reading Plus
  • 3 days per week
  • 20 minutes per day

Text Sets
  • Unit of study organized around a theme or
    standard or concept
  • Collection of instructional materials related to
    the theme
  • Must take into account students independent
    reading level as well as the reading level of any
    texts you ask them to read

Types of Text that Can Be Used in Instruction
  • Pictures/Photographs
  • Young adult novels/historical fiction
  • Primary source documents/artifacts
  • Expository pieces
  • Magazine articles
  • Newspaper articles (Current Events)
  • Journals/Diaries
  • Question and answer books
  • Picture books
  • Poetry
  • Web sites

Choosing Appropriate Text
  • Engaging reading style
  • Connection to current events
  • Connection to pop culture
  • Humor
  • Teen or young adults as central character
  • Action or adventure
  • Fantasy or science fiction

Utilization of Texts
  • Hooks
  • Read aloud
  • Independent reading
  • Guided reading
  • Shared reading
  • Research

Typical Text Set
  • Text 1 Activate prior knowledge through
    brainstorm, current events, or media
  • Text 2 Narrative teacher read-aloud or student
    read easy-to-access text
  • Text 3 Well-written expository text guided by
    the teacher with direct instruction in decoding
    and comprehension skills
  • Text 4 Independent and successful practice and
    extensive writing

Text Set
  • Concept/Theme
  • Media/Current Event (HOOKDraw Kids In)
  • Read-Aloud (Upper-level Too Difficult for Kids
    OR Picture Book)
  • Leveled Independent Reading (Many different books
    to meet the levels of many kids)
  • Guided Reading (Insertion of Vocabulary and
    Comprehension Instruction)
  • Link to Text (Textbook or Main Piece of Difficult
  • Research/Writing (ProductHigh Interest Topic to

Focus of Text Set Unit
  • How will you facilitate
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Discussion

Choosing a Topic
Text Set Topics
  • Religious Conflict
  • Underground Railroad
  • The Crucible
  • Ecosystems
  • Computer Ethics
  • Civil Rights
  • World Religions
  • French Speaking African Countries
  • Ecology
  • Volcanoes
  • School Violence
  • Disabilities
  • Horrors of War
  • Civil Rights
  • The American Revolution
  • Great Mathematical Thinkers
  • Gangs

Unit Specifications
  • Unit will include a day-by-day plan including
  • Key ideas/big ideas
  • Concepts/key terms to be taught and how they will
    be taught
  • Discussion points/provocative questions (small
    group/whole group)
  • Research opportunities (Small group/individual)
  • Writing opportunities (Journals, quick writes,
    exit notes)
  • Comprehension strategies and where they will be
    inserted (Mini-lessons)
  • Community building
  • Group projects
  • Assessment

Choosing High Impact Vocabulary
  • Identify key concepts and terms (vocabulary) to
    be learned during the unit
  • How will they be taught?
  • Explicitly (direct instruction)?
  • Implicitly (through reading practice and

Strategy Instruction
  • For readings that are to be completed using
    guided instruction
  • Which reading strategies will you model for the
  • Be sure to use strategies before, during, and
    after reading.

  • How will you stimulate discussion before, during,
    and after reading?
  • Will you use provocative questions?
  • Will the discussion be small group or whole
  • How will you keep the discussion going?

  • What writing opportunities will students have
    before, during, and after reading?
  • What form will they take (journals, quick
    writes, exit notes, etc.)?
  • What will be their purpose (assessment,
    reflection, etc.)?

  • What research opportunities will you include
    during the course of the unit?
  • Will they be small group or individual?
  • How will topics be assigned? (Note It is
    important to have two research opportunities in a
    unit. The first is a group project for which the
    teacher assigns the topic. This usually comes
    somewhere towards the beginning of the unit,
    allowing them to further build their background
    knowledge and vocabulary. The second is an
    individual research assignment for which the
    student chooses his or her own topic based on
    interests developed during the course of the
    unit. This would come at the end of the unit.)

  • How will you assess reading gains?
  • How will you assess the learning taking place?
  • Objective tests?
  • Written assignments?
  • Individual or group projects?

  • What is fluency? What skills does it include?

  • The ability to read text quickly, accurately,
    and with proper expression (NRP).
  • Rate, Accuracy, Prosody

  • Automaticity Quick, accurate, effortless
    recognition of letters and words
  • Speed fluid pace in reading connected text

  • Correctly decoding unknown words
  • Recognizing high-frequency and familiar words

  • Making reading sound natural like spoken language
  • Using appropriate intonation
  • Using appropriate expression
  • Pausing appropriately at phrase boundaries

Whats wrong with round robin?
  • Embarrassing to poor readers
  • Teaches very little
  • Rarely engages students
  • Typically only focuses on oral reading
    performance, not understanding
  • Little connection to real life
  • Reduces time that could be spent on more valuable
    reading practice

Fluency Instruction
  • How can you provide fluency instruction?

Model Fluent Reading
  • Frequent teacher read-alouds
  • Listening to books on tape
  • Books read by fluent peers

Words mean more than what is set down on paper.
It takes the human voice to infuse them with the
shades of deeper meaning.
  • -Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Why Read-Aloud?
  • Students
  • See reading as emotionally powerful
  • Are motivated to read more
  • Witness fluent reading
  • Are exposed to multiple genres
  • Explore sophisticated words and text structures
  • Observe teachers use of comprehension strategies
    through think aloud

When To Read Aloud
  • When hearing the text will help students process
    or enjoy it in a more effective way
  • When introducing new or difficult texts
  • When reading poetry or plays
  • When you want to expose students to text without
    copying and distributing
  • When you want to focus students attention
  • As an opener or wrap-up

Types of Materials to Read Aloud
  • Directions
  • Class books (novel you read from each day)
  • Literature (to help students grasp relationships
    and hear the sound of language)
  • Observations (from a scientific report used to
    begin a discussion)
  • Random items you think are fun, powerful, or
    useful to share

Choosing A Read Aloud
  • Does this book meet the needs of the students at
    this time?
  • Can I read this book in such a way that students
    will not be bored by it? (ie. Pace, Voice, and
  • Do I enjoy this book?
  • Does this book match my instructional goals? (Not
    necessarily tied to the curriculum)

Fluency Instruction
  • Choral Reading
  • Paired Reading
  • Echo Reading
  • Recorded Readings
  • Repeated Readings
  • Readers Theater
  • Phrase Boundaries

Text Difficulty
  • Independent Level 95-100 accuracy
  • Can read text independently without assistance
  • Instructional Level 90-94 accuracy
  • Can read text with instructional assistance
  • Frustration Level Below 90 accuracy
  • Has great difficulty reading text, even with

Determining Text Difficulty
  • To determine a students reading level for a
    specific text, calculate
  • Correct number of words read
  • Total number of words read
  • Percent accuracy
  • Example 48 50 .96 (96) Independent level

Fluency Assessment
  • One minute timed reading
  • Total words read
  • - errors
  • Words Correct Per Minute (WCPM)

Fluency Assessment Putting It All Together
  • Start timer when student says first word
  • Give student word if they cant decode after 3
    seconds and count as error
  • Slash words read incorrectly
  • Skipped words
  • Mispronounced words
  • Word substitutions, including incorrect forms of
  • Words in wrong order
  • Struggling that lasts 3 seconds or more

Fluency Assessment Putting It All Together
  • Do not count as an error
  • Added words
  • Varying pronunciation due to accent, dialect, or
    speech impediment
  • Repetitions of a correctly read word
  • Self-correction of a mistake
  • Mark text at one minute
  • WCPMTotal words-errors (slashes)/min.
  • AccuracyWord Correct/Total words

Independent Reading Practice
Why Independent Reading
  • Improves Reading Achievement
  • Improves Student Confidence (Successful practice)
  • Improves Student Motivation to Read Content Texts

Motivation is the Key!
  • Student Choice
  • Gives students ownership of the outcome
  • Clear goals
  • What they are supposed to learn
  • Academically safe environment
  • Reading materials at the students independent
    reading level.

Reading Levels
  • Independent Easy
  • Word Identification99 accuracy
  • Comprehension95
  • Instructional Learning
  • Word Identification90 accuracy
  • Comprehension75 accuracy
  • Frustration Hard
  • Word Identificationlt90 accuracy
  • Comprehensionlt50 accuracy

Effective Reading Responses
  • Reading Logs
  • One Sentence Summaries
  • Graphic Organizers
  • Student Generated Question/Answer

Classroom Library Display
  • Books on Display
  • Print Books
  • Audio books
  • Print-rich Environment
  • Word webs
  • Examples of figures of speech
  • Student work examples
  • Classroom library
  • Magazines
  • Periodicals
  • Various Kinds of Literature and non-fiction texts
  • Teacher Modeling the Love of Reading

Alternative Assessments
  • Student produced cartoons
  • Student book talks
  • Posters
  • Plays
  • Character Reflections
  • Journals
  • Portfolios

Books in the Classroom
  • Have appropriately leveled books and materials in
    the classroom.
  • Have a variety of reading material available.
  • Have teacher book talks to introduce books the
    students might enjoy.
  • Have reading materials that address life
    situations of students.

How To Make Independent Reading Work in the
  • Teacher Monitoring (Clipboard cruising)
  • Asking questions
  • Student read-alouds
  • Book talks
  • Two-point rubric
  • Classroom expectations
  • 10-20 of class grade (recommended)
  • Provide lots of classroom books
  • Incentive program for teachers and students

Monitoring Independent Reading
Independent Reading Rubric   1 Point--In your
seat with your independent reading book when
the tardy bell rings 1 Point--Reading for the
FULL ten minutes (9 minutes, 59 secondsNO
POINT!)   2 Points Reading Success
(No Transcript)
Conferencing with Students
  • How is the reading going?
  • What do you like/dislike about this book?
  • What makes this a good choice for you?
  • Are there parts that confuse you?
  • Have students read a section of text they liked
    and one that is new.

Vocabulary/Word Study
  • Think about the vocabulary instruction that
    takes place in your classroom. What
    instructional strategies and activities do you

Goals of Vocabulary Instruction
  • To build interest in words
  • To connect words found in texts to students life
  • To clarify and extend word meanings across
    multiple curriculum areas
  • To develop strategies for learning new words
  • To give students many opportunities to use and
    receive feedback on correct and incorrect word

What We Know from Research
  • The scientific research on vocabulary
    instruction reveals that most vocabulary is
    learned indirectly and that some vocabulary must
    be taught directly.
  • (National Reading Panel, 2001)

Indirect Vocabulary Learning
  • Students learn vocabulary indirectly when they
    hear and see words used in many different
    contexts for example, through conversations
    with adults, through being read to, and through
    reading extensively on their own.

Direct Vocabulary Learning
  • Students learn vocabulary directly when they are
    explicitly taught both individual words and
    word-learning strategies. Direct vocabulary
    instruction aids reading comprehension.

Four Stages of Word Knowledge
  • Stage 1 No Knowledge-never saw it before
    (example Radeon)
  • Stage 2 Vague familiarity-heard it but doesnt
    know what it means (example cache)
  • Stage 3 Contextualized knowledge-Recognizes it
    in context as having something to do with_____.
    (example microprocessor)
  • Stage 4 Rich and flexible-knows it well

Vocabulary Instruction
  • How do you select words for vocabulary

Vocabulary Instruction
  • Choose interesting words with mileage
  • Create student-friendly explanations
  • Decontextualize the words provide examples
  • Create follow up activities that prompt students
    to interact with meanings
  • Create ways to maintain the words over time

What Words Should I Teach
  • Directly teach those words that are important for
    understanding a concept or the text
  • Teach words that students are likely to see again
    and again
  • Provide instruction for words that are
    particularly difficult for your students

Choosing Words to Teach Three Tiers
  • Tier One Most basic words-rarely require
    instructional attention to their meanings in
    school (clock, baby, happy, walk)
  • Tier Two High frequency words that are found
    across a variety of domains-instruction toward
    tier two words is most productive (coincidence,
    absurd, industrious, fortunate)
  • Tier Three Words whose frequency use is quite
    low and often limited to specific
    domains-probably best learned when needed in
    content area (isotope, lathe, peninsula, refiner)

Identifying Tier Two Words
  • Importance and utility Words that are used by
    more mature language users and are frequently
    found in a variety of texts
  • Instructional potential Words that can be used
    in a variety of ways so that students can build
    deep understandings and representations of them
    and make connections to other words and concepts
  • Conceptual understanding Words that deepen a
    students understanding of a general concept by
    providing precise and specific words for
    describing that concept

Name That Tier
  • forlorn ceiling
  • triumphant oboe
  • absurd hungry
  • hostile corner
  • colonial break

Name That Tier
  • 3 - forlorn 2 - ceiling
  • 2 - triumphant 3 - oboe
  • 2 - absurd 1 - hungry
  • 2 - hostile 1 - corner
  • 2 - colonial 1 - break

Dictionary Definitions
  • Looking up dictionary definitions is not an
    effective practice

Student-Friendly Explanations
  • Provide student-friendly explanations that tell
    what a word means in everyday connected language.
  • Example unanticipated
  • Dictionary Friendly
  • Not anticipated, If something is
    unexpected unanticipated you
  • are surprised about
  • it

Questions, Reasons, Examples
  • If you are walking around a dark room, you need
    to do it cautiously. Why? What are some other
    things that need to be done cautiously?
  • What is something you could do to impress your
  • Which of these might be extraordinary? Why or why
  • A shirt that was comfortable or a shirt that
    danced across the room?

Sentence Stems
  • The newspaper called Mr. Brown a philanthropist
  • I told my teacher I wanted to be a spectator at
    the play because
  • I scrutinized my moms face because

Word Lines
  • How surprised would you be if
  • you saw your friend vault over the moon?
  • your teacher commended you for doing good work?
  • a dog started bantering with you?
  • a coach berated his football team for fumbling?
  • a rabbit trudged through school?
  • ________________________________________
  • Least surprised Most surprised

Word Lines
  • How much energy does it take to
  • meander down the hall?
  • vault over a car?
  • banter with you best friend for an hour?
  • berate someone at the top of your voice?
  • stalk a turtle?
  • ________________________________________
  • Least Energy Most Energy

Relationships Among Words
  • If someone were arguing vehemently, why might it
    make sense that he was using wild gesticulations?
  • Could an acute sense cause derision? Why?
  • If someone introduces herself with suavity, would
    she likely have the audacity to insult her guest?

Put Into Students Own World
  • Why might a new male student introduce himself
    with sauvity to all the females?
  • Why might a student speak to the principal with
  • As Melinda prepared for her final exam, she
    sensed a feeling of acute anxiety? Why?

Comprehensive Vocabulary Instruction
  • Emphasizes the importance of wide reading.
    Students learn much of their vocabulary from
  • Includes instruction on individual words.
    Instruction can assist students in learning
    specific words, improve comprehension of
    selections from which the words are taken, and
    show students the value of words.
  • Provides instruction in learning words
    independently since students learn much of their
    vocabulary on their own.
  • Promotes activities leading to word
    consciousness. If students are interested in
    words, value them, and find them intriguing they
    are likely to develop full and rich vocabularies.
  • (Graves, Juel, Graves, 2001)

Vocabulary Instruction
  • Do
  • Connect words to prior knowledge
  • Extend instruction to promote active engagement
  • Read aloud to students
  • Encourage independent wide reading
  • Promote word consciousness
  • Teach word learning strategies
  • Provide multiple exposures to words
  • Use words in context
  • Connect words to concept development
  • Provide real experiences for learning new concepts
  • Dont
  • Use arbitrary word lists
  • Rely solely on dictionaries
  • Rely too heavily on context to determine meaning
  • Use words out of context

Word Study
  • Word sorts
  • Word study notebook
  • Alphabet books
  • Play with words
  • Study etymologies of words

Word Study
  • Affixes are word parts that are fixed to either
    the beginnings of words (prefixes) or the ending
    of words (suffixes). The word disrespectful has
    two affixes, a prefix (dis-) and a suffix (-ful).
  • Base words are words from which many other words
    are formed. For example many words can be formed
    from the base word migrate migration, migrant,
    immigration, immigrant, migrating, migratory
  • Word roots are the words from other languages
    that are the origin of many English words. About
    60 of all English words have Latin or Greek

Prefixes and Suffixes
  • Four prefixes, un, re, in, dis, account for 58
    of all prefixed words. Add 16 more
    prefixes-en/em, non, in/im, over, mis, sub, pre,
    enter, fore, de, trans, super, semi, anti, mid,
    under -- and you account for 97 of all prefixed
  • For suffixes, s/es, ed, ing, account for 65 of
    all suffixed words.
  • Learning to read, spell, and understand these
    prefixes and suffixes gives readers a huge
    advantage with multi-syllabic words

  • What are the characteristics of your proficient

Characteristics of Proficient Readers
  • Search for connections between what they know and
    new information
  • Ask questions of themselves, the authors, and the
    texts they read
  • Draw inferences during and after reading
  • Distinguish important from less important ideas
  • Synthesize information
  • Repair faulty comprehension
  • Monitor their comprehension
  • Visualize and create mental images

Scaffolding Instruction with Comprehension
  • Teacher modeling
  • Explaining the strategy
  • Demonstrating how to apply the strategy correctly
  • Thinking aloud to model the mental processes
  • Guided practice
  • Releasing responsibility gradually
  • Practicing the strategy together
  • Scaffolding attempts, supporting student
    thinking, and providing feedback
  • Sharing thinking processes in pairs, small
    groups, or whole class settings
  • Independent practice
  • Applying the strategy on their own
  • Receiving feedback
  • Application of strategy
  • Applying a clearly understood strategy to a new
  • Demonstrating the effective use of the strategy
    in more difficult text

Construct Background Knowledge by
  • Encouraging conversations
  • Using real objects, videos, and other books
  • Modeling your connections when reading aloud Oh,
    that reminds me of
  • Using sticky-notes in books to indicate
  • Making personal responses orally or written in
    reading response journals

Connecting Begins With
  • I remember when
  • This is like
  • One time I
  • That reminds me of

Questions to Ask That Foster Making Connections
  • As you read, did anything remind you of your own
  • How does you background knowledge help you
    predict what will happen next?
  • How did thinking about what you already know help
    you figure out this word?
  • How does thinking about what you already know
    help you understand this part of the reading?

Create visuals by
  • Modeling through the use of think alouds
  • Discussing
  • What do you see?
  • How does it make you feel?
  • Acting out what is being read
  • Drawing pictures of sensory images
  • Reading aloud together or take turns and discuss
    the images each create

Questions to Ask to Build Comprehension Through
  • What did you see when you read those words?
  • Can you describe the picture these words brought
    to mind?
  • Where is that picture in your head coming from?
    What words helped you to make that picture?
  • Why do you think your camera shut off? What will
    you do to get it back on track?
  • Have your sensory images changed as you read? How
    do these images help you understand what you read?

Questioning begins with
  • Why?
  • How come?
  • What does this mean?
  • I wonder
  • Im confused
  • Your question made me think of

Questioning continued
  • Do you have a question even before you started to
    read this book?
  • Do you notice yourself asking questions when you
    reading does not make sense?
  • What questions do you have now that you have
    reread this passage?
  • How did rereading change your questions?
  • After reading the passage, which questions are
    still unanswered?
  • Do you have any new questions?

  • Readers infer when they merge text clues with
    prior knowledge, elaborate upon what is read,
    draw conclusions, and go beyond the text on the
  • Inferring involves
  • Making predictions before and during reading
  • Connecting points/evidence
  • Figuring out an unknown word
  • Asking questions

  • A student who predicts before reading has a
    stake in whats to come. They want to see if
    their guess is correct.

Encourage inferring by
  • Playing word games
  • Playing charades
  • Reading riddle books
  • Using cartoon strips
  • Stopping to think
  • Rereading
  • Understanding new words
  • Marking clues with sticky notes to figure out the
    big picture

Begin with
  • I predict
  • I think that
  • My guess is
  • That is just what I thought
  • Now, this is a surprise
  • My conclusion is

Continue With Questions to Reveal Thinking
  • Look at the title. What prediction popped in
    your head?
  • After reading this far, have you confirmed your
    prediction? What did it sound like in your head
    when you found the answer?
  • This is a difficult word. What word would make
    sense here? How did you infer its meaning from
    its place in the sentence?

Determining Essential Ideas
  • Before reading
  • Decide the purpose for reading
  • Consciously search for facts
  • Read with specific questions in mind
  • Understand the layout

Determining Essential Ideas by (Synthesizing)
  • During reading, stop intermittently to consider
    what is important to remember
  • Distinguish between facts that are interesting
    and those that are important
  • Look for signal words in the text
  • Selectively highlight important facts and take
    marginal notes as to why it is important
  • Use graphic organizers to support thinking and
    record main facts and details
  • Code text for new learning , important details,
    and main ideas (SEE INSERT STRATEGY)

Repairing Understanding
Readers use fix-up strategies to clear up
  • Rereading
  • Reading ahead
  • Raising new questions
  • Drawing inferences
  • Making predictions
  • Figure out unknown words
  • Stop to think
  • Connect to background knowledge
  • Create a mental picture
  • Look at sentence structure
  • Look at supporting pictures
  • Identify the purpose for reading

Signals Reactions
The voice in my head changes. I am bored and confusion may have set in
The camera in my head shuts off. My understanding has been interrupted
My mind wanders and I am thinking about other things. I need to go back and reconnect
I cannot remember what I just read. I need to go back, concentrate and focus more on understanding
I am not asking or answering questions as I go. I need more background knowledge for connections
I encounter characters and have no idea when they were introduced. I have not kept track of what has been happening
Comprehension Instruction
  • Do
  • Explicitly teach comprehension strategies at ALL
    grade levels (listening level for non-readers)
  • Help students use strategies that work for them
    before, during, and after reading
  • Scaffold questions from lower to higher level to
    promote higher order thinking skills
  • Promote wide reading for a variety of purposes
  • Incorporate a variety of routines that
    systematically improve comprehension
  • Use different types of text at appropriate
    reading level
  • Model higher level thinking
  • Dont
  • Forget that non-readers need to have explicit
    instruction on comprehension strategies
  • Forget the importance of activating prior
    knowledge and teaching vocabulary