You want your readers to become more MOTIVATED, ENGAGED & ANALYTICAL.
That's your end goal, right?
I hear you!
You talk to your readers, you observe your readers and look over your readers' independent reading responses.
I hear you!
You know the reading standards because you've studied them, unpacked them and applied them to everything that you're doing in the classroom. BUT...the standards are so broad and don't really get into the specifics of what proficient readers need.
I hear you!
You have a bigger end goal. You know you want to help your readers become REAL READERS and not just those readers that are compliant and only have what they need to pass the standardized reading test.
I hear you!
The Problem Is...
You want your readers to become motivated, engaged and analytical readers, but there are some (or ALL) of these obstacles blocking your way...
Knowing what reading minilessons to teach your readers
Knowing the right time to teach certain strategies and skills that your readers need
Knowing how to teach the strategies and skills that your readers need
Knowing that you don't see students as numbers and you see them as readers
Knowing how to follow your school district's pacing guide WHILE...
Letting your UNIQUE readers tell you what they really need WHEN they need it!
Let's break this down into what readers need!
We want motivated readers but they sure don't come to us that way. My readers didn't come to me motivated, but they sure did leave my classroom at the end of the year being readers and living the Readerly Life.
How did they get there?
Readers need time during the reading instruction to LIVE LIKE READERS & DO WHAT READERS DO!
Readers need time to look at the kinds of readers they are, the kinds of readers they want to become and look at actions they need to take to BECOME those readers.
Readers need to be able to select texts that are important to them when learning new reading strategies and skills.
Readers need to organize basic tools to develop the behaviors and attitudes of successful and proficient readers.
Readers need to see that the kind of thinking they do while they read helps them to comprehend and understand the text.
Readers need to know HOW proficient readers think about the text.
When readers are engaged in their reading, they know when they are drifting away from the text and daydreaming. They know when they are not bringing the most relevant schema to the text.
Readers need to have strategies, tips and tricks for knowing how they can STAY engaged with a text. When readers have a reading toolbox that is constantly growing, they will be able to choose tools that best fit their unique reading needs.
Readers need strategies and tools for knowing how to monitor their own comprehension. Proficient readers know how to stay engaged in a text and recognize the signals that show when they are losing focus on a text they are reading.
Readers need to know how to react and annotate a text to track their thinking. As readers gain new knowledge, skills, strategies and tools to use while reading a text will help them to see and understand how the process of reading works when building comprehension of a text.
Readers need to understand how to read a variety of genres. When readers can quickly determine the genre of a text before reading it, they will be able to access the right reading tools they need to navigate that type of text.
Readers need to understand the structure and elements of different kinds of texts. Knowing the structure of a text helps readers determine which tools they need to better understand that text.
Readers need strategies and tools to track characters in a fiction story so they can see how the characters affect the plot of the story.
Readers need to understand and practice the inferring process. Inferring is difficult for many readers. When readers understand how inferring works, they will be able to bring relevant schema, information and connections to the text to build comprehension.
Readers need to be able to pull the most relevant ideas and details from a text to build understanding and comprehension. Reading tools and skills specific to practicing comprehension strategies need to be added to the reading toolbox throughout the school year.
For minilesson ideas to teach all of the points included here in this article, grab my free Mini-Course, 5 Days to Crafting Minilesson That Will Ignite & Engage Your Readers with Over 90 Reading Minilesson Ideas that will develop MOTIVATED, ENGAGED & ANALYTICAL readers.
The end goal of a successful reading curriculum each school year is that your readers become more analytical based on their own unique reading level. This looks different at each grade level and each reading level. BUT...readers can revisit the same comprehension skills, strategies and tools each year and apply them to text with increased complexity. (appropriate for their age and level, of course)
Readers need to be able to see how the reading process works together to build comprehension and understanding of a text. They need to practice putting it all together--synthesizing the text.
Readers need to see that as they read, their thinking evolves, grows and changes and that's okay! This changing thinking needs to take readers beyond the text.
Readers need to understand that the interpretation of a text can look different from the readers around them. When readers interpret a text, they need to be able to support their thinking with evidence from their reading.
Readers need tools for putting their thinking, reactions and annotations together into an analytical written response to reading.
Readers need to be able to take their reading toolbox of strategies, tools, tips and tricks and apply that work to standardized reading tests (because we know they have to take them). This shouldn't be the reading curriculum for the year but a few weeks near standardized testing time to see how their reading strategies can be applied to a test.
When your end goal is for your readers to become more MOTIVATED, ENGAGED & ANALYTICAL, you are creating REAL READERS.
Until next time...