Reading Duke, Ward & Pearson

(Key findings from research on reading comprehension and related instructional practices).

  • Elements of Foundational Reading Skills

    All of the following involves approaches to literacy that are to support reading comprehension.

    • Phonological awareness, or the awareness of and ability to work with sounds in spoken language, sets the stage for decoding, blending, and, ultimately, word reading. Phonological awareness begins developing before the beginning of formal schooling and continues through third grade and beyond.
    • Phonemic awareness is the ability to identify and manipulate individual sounds (phonemes) in spoken words. We know that a student’s skill in phonological awareness is a good predictor of later reading success or difficulty. Find out what parents and teachers can do to help children develop this critical literacy skill.
    • Phonics is about letters and methods for teaching people how to read and write an alphabetic language by demonstrating the relationship between the sounds of the spoken language, and the letters or groups of letters or syllables of the written language. In English, this is also known as the alphabetic principle or the alphabetic code.
    • Orthography is spelling. An orthography is a set of conventions for writing a language, including norms of spelling, hyphenation, capitalization, word breaks, emphasis, and punctuation.
    • Graphophonological semantic cognitive flexibility (GSF), a form of executive function. GSF is the ability to simultaneously attend to, and flexibly switch between, the letters and sounds in words (graphophonological) and the meanings of words (semantic).
  • Elements of Foundational Reading Skills still relevant for secondary instruction

    • Morphological awareness, which is an understanding of how words can be broken down into smaller units of meaning such as roots, prefixes, and suffixes, has emerged as an important contributor to word reading and comprehension skills.
    • Reading Fluency is reading with accuracy, automaticity, and prosody—also serves as a bridge between decoding and reading comprehension.
  • Text Structures

    • Punctuation
    • Graphical Elements
    • Discerning Structure
  • For Every Reader, Comprehension Processes Vary by

    • What is read
    • Why one is reading
    • What the reader does with what they comprehend
  • Vocabulary

    • Teaching vocabulary helps with comprehending the current reading
    • Students with more prior knowledge read with greater comprehension
  • Comprehension Self-Questioning During Reading (A strategy cluster)

    • Text Preview
    • Monitoring Comprehension
    • Ascertaining the gist
    • Summarizing the reading
    • Posing questions for further reading
  • Knowledge Building

    • Very closely related to Comprehension Knowledge Building
    • Students benefit from explicit comprehension instruction before, during and after reading
  • Supporting Engagement with the Reading

    • Reading broadly and reading indepth
    • Discussing the reading
    • Analyzing the reading
    • Writing about the readings –> (extended writing is superior to answering questions
  • Reader Motivation is Crucial

    (Reader motivation and reading proficiency are mutually conditioning)