Supporting Your Child in Reading Comprehension Skills

What is Reading comprehension?

Reading comprehension is the understanding of what a particular text means and the ideas the author is attempting to convey, both textual and subtextual. In order to read any text, your brain must process not only the literal words of the piece, but also their relationship with one another, the context behind the words, how subtle language and vocabulary usage can impact emotion and meaning behind the text, and how the text comes together as a larger, coherent whole. There are several skills that a learner must possess in order to comprehend what they are reading. One important skill is making inferences. This requires the learner to make links between their prior knowledge and clues from the text. One way to develop this skill is to start using images;

 

 

1) Give this picture to the learner.

2) Ask them to read the following statements;

  • Jill is in a bad mood

  • Jack like to cook and has his best spoon with him

  • Wanda is looking for her homework

  • Tess needs to get to the bathroom very soon

  • Bill likes food too much

  • Sam is on his way to the swimming pool. He has hurt his foot.

  • Molly has her boots on because she is going fishing in the brook

  • Ben is a carpenter and has all his tools with him

  • Ann thinks she looks good

  • Tom’s mum took him to the fair and he has a big balloon

  • Jim is on his way to school.

  • May has a pain in her tooth and must go to the dentist. 

  • Harry has been for a run and needs a cool drink

  • John is always reading a book. He had better look out or he may fall over

  • The man in the moon is called Nick. 

3) Use the information provided in the statements to find out the names of the people shown in the picture above. 

4) Get the learner to verbalise the reason for their choice. For example, if they feel that the person on the left is Jill, ask them why they would think so and what clues and prior knowledge did they use to derive at that decision. 

Once students have a better understanding of making inferences from pictures, you can then move on to making inferences at the sentence level, paragraph level and lastly to text level. 

To get your hands on more strategies, do join us at our Developing Comprehension Skills workshop at DAS ACADEMY.