For many of us it was a painstaking experience with many questions and maybe even a few tears of frustration. But once it was completed, undoubtedly the printed words were read with pride and maybe disbelief that the paper was actually done! Then came the grade – possibly less than expected and left us wondering what we had done wrong. If this was not your experience and you received a good grade, you undoubtedly possessed good formative skills in extrapolation of factual information from reading and writing development.reader
Guiding children to reflect on a written passage or book does not happen overnight. It’s a learned process that takes practice. When should you start with your own children? Now!
Tips to help your children become proficient readers.
Elementary Age Students
Whether you are reading to your child or the child is reading to you, stop after small sections and ask questions about the text. This will help to check comprehension and to determine facts that will be important to remember. reader
As the child begins to read books for book reports and literacy projects, show the child how to document the significant facts from each chapter by creating a “notes packet”. This packet can be in a notebook or simply some loose leaf paper stapled together. After a specific chapter or number of pages the child can write down bullet points of information from that sections. The packet can then be used to help with the summary for the report or project.
Middle and High School Students
Outlined Reading for Novels
If the student is reading a novel, fiction or non-fiction, it’s important to create a notes packet before getting started. This is similar to the elementary version. During or after each reading (chapters or sections of the book) the child can record information, quotes, new terms or any other pertinent facts. This documentation should be more elaborate than the elementary notes packet and also include page number references for citing references. reader
Outlined Reading for Textbooks
Many students struggle with gathering information from a textbook. When reading a textbook, the first step is to skim the material and create an outline. After making an outline, the student can go back to each section and record the facts. Outlines make good study tools for quizzes and exams.
Help your children begin learn how to pull important information from the books they are reading. The more practice children have in gathering information, recognizing important facts, and documenting vital data the easier school experiences will be for them. Becoming a competent reader is a good life skill too!
For wisdom will come into your heart,
and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul;
discretion will watch over you,
understanding will guard you.
By Megan Stone, M.Ed.
Wife to Rick
Mom of two
1 Corinthians 13 Parenting Team Member
Founder of Stone Foundations of Learning, Inc.
Author of Own Your Education: A Student’s Guide to Greater Success in School (And Life)
Megan’s book, Own Your Education:
A Student’s Guide to Greater Success in (And Life)