Analytic reading involves breaking a text into its component parts, in order to understand its meaning and relate it to other texts. While critical to success in school, this skill is lacking in most students. This week, we will provide tips to promote analytic reading in the classroom.
This Week's Tips
Model Analytic Reading (Monday)
Use "thinking aloud" strategies to model analytic processes. Consider the following: What happens in your mind as you read for information? What questions are you asking? What thoughts are you entertaining? When do you reread? When do you pause and think? From what previous knowledge are you drawing as you make conclusions? What words must you stop and define in order to understand crucial information? Share this information with your students as you read a passage aloud. If resources permit, transform reading into a "hands-on" process by copying the passage to a transparency and mark your interactions with the text in the margins of the transparency. Adapt this idea for your students by encouraging them to attach sticky notes appropriately as they experience questions, ideas, or epiphanies with the text.
Teach Writing Structure To Reinforce Reading Strategies (Tuesday)
Teach or review with your students the common writing structure used by your textbook. If, generally, your text follows the topic, support, conclusion pattern, show this to your students. Encourage formal or informal outlining to enable students to break a passage into its parts in order to eliminate unnecessary information and understand the important points. If your text uses chronological order, order of importance, or spatial order, review these structures with your students.
Anticipation Guides Improve Reading (Wednesday)
Create a series of generalized statements related to a passage of text. Prior to reading, ask students to write down each generalization (see the download) and indicate their level of agreement or disagreement with the generalization. As students read the passage, they should take notes on the issues presented by the generalizations. After reading, students should evaluate their original marks to determine if their level of agreement or disagreement has changed. Follow the anticipation guide with an explanatory writing or discussion activity.
Encourage Purposeful Reading (Thursday)
Before reading, establish a purpose by directing students to read to determine the most important word in the assigned passage. After reading, students should identify the most important word and provide at least three details supporting their choices.
Making an Inference Requires Analytic Reading (Friday)
Provide a question requiring an inferred answer. As students read, they should take notes related to the questions from the text. After reading, based on class discussion, experience, or prior knowledge, students should explain their own knowledge about the topic in writing. By combining notes and personal knowledge, students should create an inferred answer.