Experienced Reading Teachers – Help

  • Experienced Reading Teachers – Help

    Posted by RoninGrey on March 21, 2023 at 3:54 am

    My little boy is in a Christian private school, but we homeschooled for Pre-K and for 1st Grade. He’s in 3rd Grade now, and he reads very well, and speaks with a decent vocabulary. But he really struggles with reading comprehension and retention. It’s really affecting him in school when he needs to study or when he has to complete assignments in class like answering questions about what he read, even if it’s “open-book.” He struggles with finding the answers, often not understanding what he reads. I think he needs help with a different set of vocabulary, maybe just more expansive rather than more formal. Maybe we missed something during the homeschool years. Does anyone have exercises, hints, and programs (courses or apps) that have worked for you in this same situation of comprehension / retention?

    lianass replied 2 months, 1 week ago 6 Members · 6 Replies
  • 6 Replies
  • CloudsHomestead

    March 21, 2023 at 9:27 am

    Comprehension is a hard thing to teach. When we read chapter books to our kindergartners we alway begin by asking them to go back in their brain and remember what happened yesterday. We usually read the magic treehouse books to them. We make a slideshow to go along with the book. It’s usually pictures of something new for them. For example: a pterodactyl, Tyrannosaurus rex and other pictures of new vocabulary words. Then we start at the beginning of the slide show and ask them what happened first and show that slide. We “walk down memory lane” with them until we reach the picture we ended on the last time we read. We typically read a couple chapters a day. All this to say, we also pre-read the story in order to have the slides ready for our read aloud time. Maybe for your child this isn’t necessary but it helps our little people so much. Maybe it’s a good place to start for you guys and then you can move into just talking about it after a book or two. The visuals really work with our little people.

  • PetraTilling

    March 21, 2023 at 12:54 pm

    I would first, see if this is possibly a “brain freeze” issue or truly a struggle with retention.

    Comprehension and retention are formed by motivation and necessity. Can he read, comprehend and retain things he is motivated by? (eg video games, personal books, card games/rules/narrative, etc) If so, the issue may be a motivation and/or practical necessity issue.

    Try a reward system. This can teach a separation of a reward from an activity. Comes in handy later in life (eg paycheck).

    It is critical to first see if this is a brain freeze issue. If it is, stress management and accommodations should be made along with practice outside of the classroom and at home.

    Lastly, this could also just be a pure avoidance behavior. This can be addressed by requiring a satisfactory outcome and assistance with walking through something he doesn’t like.

    I guess what I’m saying is, knowing the reason for the difficulty is necessary in order to resolve the issue.

  • CarolinaPatriot

    March 21, 2023 at 11:49 pm

    I’m a homeschool mom of 4 kids. Comprehension was hard at that age for 2 of mine. They needed a slower approach than my other 2 children, which was fine. They are older now and are able to comprehend just as well as the other 2. Anyway, I’ll tell you what I did. Take from it what works for you and throw out what doesn’t. When I read a book to my kids, or have them read to me, I would always have them narrate (I still do this, even for my high schooler). Basically, we would stop after reading a page or 2 and ask them what has happened or tell me something interesting about the book so far or something like that. They would proceed to tell me what all happened. If they couldn’t tell me much at all or couldn’t tell me the major points, I would go slower. We would read only a paragraph and see if they understood. If not, we would read just a couple of sentences and have them tell me something, anything. Eventually after doing a couple of sentences at a time (yes, it took a long time to get through a chapter in a book), we would increase to one paragraph, then 2 and eventually we could read 3 or so pages and they could narrate well and therefore comprehend what was going on.

    A second thing I would do is have children draw pictures of what was happening while I was reading. Then they would go through the pictures and tell me what was happening in the picture. I would write down what they said next to each picture and they loved to go back and read what they said the day before. This was good to get them to remember what was going on the day before and therefore comprehend what was going on in the book on the following day.

    It took a lot of work and a lot of patience, but it was worth it for sure

    Good luck!

  • RoninGrey

    March 31, 2023 at 1:57 pm

    Thank you, all!

    • This reply was modified 8 months, 1 week ago by  RoninGrey.
  • UnicornChickenRanch

    August 29, 2023 at 4:14 am

    edhelper.com has great reading comprehension worksheets for tons of books.

    lexile.com is a great place to find books in your reading level rNge. They even have a reading level test.

  • lianass

    September 29, 2023 at 1:57 pm

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