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Content: What Good Readers Do

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Good readers understand the links between words and their meanings.

 To do so, they draw on their experiences of the things and concepts in a piece of writing. 

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Good readers also notice other things, outside the text, that help them make sense of the what they’re reading. For instance, they may notice how a piece of writing is being put to use. Is it a news story intended to inform readers? Is it an advertisement? Is it fiction?

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Beginning Readers Are on the Way to Becoming Good Readers

                    Beginning readers are learners on the way to becoming good readers. 

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Almost all beginning readers need instruction from teachers and parapros.

Reading Instruction:

With instruction, these learners come to recognize words and make meaning of them.

Decoding: 

  • recognize the patterns of letters that make up the sounds of words and the words those sounds denote.
  • for atypical patterns, readers need additional instruction (for example the word “knight” doesn’t follow normal sound rules)

 Automaticity:

 

Good readers become so skilled at decoding that they achieve sight word recognition. This means that when they see a word, recognizing it requires almost no effort. It’s automatic.

Language Comprehension (making meaning): 

 
Readers move from word recognition to understanding what they’ve read.  Each reader draws on different experiences as he or she makes meaning. 
  • Vocabulary
  • Background knowledge
  • Reasoning skills 

Experiences Affect Meaning

 

PRINT AWARENESS: 

 

starts with the realization that the symbols on a page or sign on the side of the road actually mean something.

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With time, print awareness leads to a knowledge of how to use texts. Some research has shown that children with good print awareness improve at reading faster than their peers with similar vocabularies and other reading skills (Whitehurst & Lonigan, 1998).

  • Watching adults or siblings use books and listening to them read and seeing how they use them
  • Some children build on their print awareness by looking at picture books (young children can understand meaning in books like these, even if they can’t read yet).

Maybe you can see why reading to young children is so important. It helps jumpstart their reading journey by strengthening their oral language vocabulary. When they listen to other people read, children recognize words they already know and begin to learn the meaning of new words.

PHONEMIC AWARENESS

With good instruction, children begin to connect images, sounds, and meanings. They learn about:

  • the sounds of the English language—what are called “phonemes.”
  • to recognize the 26 letters of the alphabet.

A combination of phonemic awareness and print awareness unlocks the most important step: learning the sounds connected to letters. Early readers begin to put these sounds together to create combinations of sounds and then words

Module: Helping Students Read (Clone)

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