Teaching comprehension doesn’t just stop once the reader has finished their text. The use of questioning, as an example, has been used too many times as a test rather than a tool to develop deeper understanding. While questioning can be used as assessment tool it does not mean that you are teaching comprehension. We need to give explicit instruction, demonstrate and guide whilst the students are practicing and constantly evaluate the students as they learn a variety of different comprehension strategies.
From what I have observed in my time in the classroom (which isn’t too long) and through exploring research is that a lot of teaching of text is mainly print-based. Even though this form of text or media is important to teach, the exposure of multimodal texts, such as computer games, television documentaries and online social network sites, must be included in today’s teaching. Just an exposure to these multimodal texts will not be enough to enable the students to fully comprehend the multimodal texts. Incorporating strategies to improve comprehension skills of these multimodal text will then in turn help students with fluency and understanding of print-based texts.
The attached article does a great job of examining the effectiveness of a traditional model for comprehension of print-based texts when implemented to a digital multimodal text. I highly recommend reviewing it and taking some bits and pieces that you like from it.
Harris, A. (2011). How effective are print-based comprehension models for reading and assessing multimodal texts? Literacy Learning : the Middle Years, 19(3), 19.
Using frameworks is very useful to help you start implementing strategies. Teachers need to be the decision makers in choosing the right framework or model that will suit their students. The article attached mentions some great instructional frameworks and examples of how to use them. These frameworks are the Scaffolded Reading Experience, Questioning the Author, Collaborative Strategic Reading, Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies and Concept-Oriented Reading Instruction. This article also states in what group format the framework are suited best for teaching. Whether you need to teach to a small group, whole class or individual these frameworks will let you know what’s best but as mentioned earlier only you can decide what best suits your classroom or style of teaching.
Liang, L.A., & Dole, J.A. (2006). Help with teaching reading comprehension. Comprehension instructional fraeworks. The Reading Teacher, 59(8), 742-753.
The environment that the teacher provides within the classroom is very important in giving students the best opporunity to develop their reading comprehension. An environment that allows for:
- time reading different types of text genres,
- time exploring those text types,
- texts that relate to the students and brings purpose for them
- and most importantly teacher student discussion.
Duke, N. K., & Pearson, D. P. (2002). Effective practices for developing reading comprehension. In What research has to say about reading instruction. Newark, Del: International Reading Association.
Comprehension is the ultimate goal of reading, and the means by which much cognitive growth, learning, and sheer enjoyment occurs. Comprehension enhances both the quality of our learning and the quality of our lives (Konza,2011).
Konza, D. (2011). Research into practice:Comprehension. Retrieved from http://www.dead.sa.gov.au/literacy/files/links/UtRP_1_6_v2.pdf