50 Strategies for Improving Vocabulary, Comprehension and Fluency

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  • Edition: 2nd
  • Format: Spiral Bound
  • Copyright: 2005-04-27
  • Publisher: Pearson

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Supplemental Materials

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  • The Used and Rental copies of this book are not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.


This book offers step-by-step instructional procedures for developing key reading skills for comprehension, vocabulary and fluency. The 50 strategies in this book are designed to support teachers in assessing the strategies currently used by students. The teacher can then use the knowledge gained through assessment to help students: *learn to process text, * use the comprehension processes that strong readers use, and * acquire vocabulary and fluency in a way that will support their comprehension and overall learning in the classroom and in life. Inservice Teachers and Reading/Literacy Specialists.

Author Biography

Adrienne Herrell has recently retired from California State University-Fresno, where she was a professor of reading/language arts and taught classes in early literacy, assessment, and strategies for teaching English language learners.  50 Strategies for Improving Vocabulary, Comprehension, and Fluency: An Active Approach is Dr. Herrell's eighth book for Merrill/Prentice Hall.  Her previous books include Camcorder in the Classroom with Joel Fowler, Fifty Strategies for Teaching English Language Learners with Michael Jordan, Reflective Planning, Teaching, and Evaluation: K-12 with Judy Eby and Jim Hicks, and Teaching Elementary School with Judy Eby.  Dr. Herrell's writing and research are built on her experiences teaching in Florida's public schools for 23 years.  She and Dr. Jordan (co-author) are currently engaged in research in public schools in California and Florida.  She teaches part-time for her alma mater, Florida State University, in Panana City where she now resides.

Michael Jordan is an associate professor in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at California State University-Fresno.  He has taught primary grades through high school in Georgia, Alabama, Florida, and California.  Dr. Jordan is also an actor, education director, and board member of the Theatre Three Repertory Company in Fresno, California, and is dedicated to providing access to live theatre to children and youth.  He and Dr. Herrell incorporate many dramatic reenactment strategies in their joint research working with vocabulary and comprehension development in children learning English in the public schools of California and Florida.

Table of Contents

Introductionp. 1
Word- and Sentence-Level Comprehensionp. 5
Collecting Words: Learning the Nuances of Word Meaningsp. 6
Step by Stepp. 6
Applications and Examplesp. 8
Structural Analysis: Focusing on the Meaning of Word Partsp. 10
Step by Stepp. 10
Applications and Examplesp. 14
Word Mapping: Exploring Word Meanings and Applicationsp. 16
Step by Stepp. 17
Applications and Examplesp. 17
Word Origin Studies: Linking Word Histories and Roots to Word Comprehensionp. 20
Step by Stepp. 20
Applications and Examplesp. 21
Vocabulary Processing: Multiple Strategies Approachp. 24
Step by Stepp. 24
Applications and Examplesp. 28
Text Talk: Scaffolding Comprehension through Oral Discussionp. 30
Step by Stepp. 30
Applications and Examplesp. 32
Microselection: Introducing the Concepts of Key Words and Main Ideasp. 34
Step by Stepp. 34
Applications and Examplesp. 35
Fluency Strategies: Multiple Approachesp. 38
Step by Stepp. 39
Applications and Examplesp. 40
Paragraph-Level Comprehensionp. 43
Anaphoric Relations: Word Substitutionsp. 44
Step by Stepp. 44
Applications and Examplesp. 46
Connectives: Focusing on Words That Support Cohesion and Inferencep. 48
Step by Stepp. 48
Applications and Examplesp. 50
Text Charting: Exploring the Connections among Sentencesp. 53
Step by Stepp. 53
Applications and Examplesp. 56
Inferences: Filling in the Missing Piecesp. 58
Step by Stepp. 58
Applications and Examplesp. 59
Read, Pair, Share: Working with a Partner to Answer Questionsp. 61
Step by Stepp. 61
Applications and Examplesp. 63
Cooperative Scripts: Working in Pairs to Improve Comprehension and Recallp. 65
Step by Stepp. 65
Applications and Examplesp. 66
Gist (Generating Interaction between Schemata and Text): Making Comprehension Connectionsp. 68
Step by Stepp. 68
Applications and Examplesp. 69
Integrating Background Knowledgep. 73
Predicting: Using Past Experiences to Support Comprehensionp. 74
Step by Stepp. 74
Applications and Examplesp. 76
Perspective Taking: Getting into the Minds of the Charactersp. 79
Step by Stepp. 79
Applications and Examplesp. 81
Double-Entry Journals: Connecting Experiences to Textp. 84
Step by Stepp. 84
Applications and Examplesp. 85
Read/Think Aloud: Emphasizing Connections and Thought Processesp. 87
Step by Stepp. 87
Applications and Examplesp. 88
Series Book Studies: Building Background Knowledge through Familiar Story Elementsp. 91
Step by Stepp. 92
Applications and Examplesp. 93
Intertextual Studies: Comparing Story Elements to Build Comprehensionp. 96
Step by Stepp. 96
Applications and Examplesp. 97
Graphic Organizers: Visually Representing Ideas, Text, and Connectionsp. 100
Step by Stepp. 100
Applications and Examplesp. 102
Critical Reading: Analyzing Text through Higher-Level Thinking Activitiesp. 104
Step by Stepp. 104
Applications and Examplesp. 106
Imagination, Images, and Interaction: Creating and Describing Mental Picturesp. 108
Step by Stepp. 109
Applications and Examplesp. 109
Holistic Comprehensionp. 113
KWL Charts: Supporting Comprehension into, through, and beyond Readingp. 114
Step by Stepp. 115
Applications and Examplesp. 116
Data Charts: Organizing Information to Aid Comprehension and Recallp. 118
Step by Stepp. 119
Applications and Examplesp. 120
Drama Centers: Building Comprehension through Active Processingp. 123
Step by Stepp. 124
Applications and Examplesp. 126
Story Retelling Boxes: Using Props to Reenact Storiesp. 127
Step by Stepp. 127
Applications and Examplesp. 129
Script Writing: Investigating and Analyzing Textp. 131
Step by Stepp. 131
Applications and Examplesp. 137
Reader's Theare: Using Active Reading Processes to Enhance Comprehensionp. 140
Step by Stepp. 141
Applications and Examplesp. 144
Story Structure Studies: Recognizing and Building on Narrative Story Elementsp. 147
Step by Stepp. 147
Applications and Examplesp. 149
Text Mapping: A Traveler's Guide to Comprehensionp. 151
Step by Stepp. 152
Applications and Examplesp. 154
Summarization: Identifying the Main Idea and Supporting Detailsp. 156
Step by Stepp. 156
Applications and Examplesp. 158
Nips: An Interactive Support Strategy for Comprehening "Tough" Textp. 163
Step by Stepp. 163
Applications and Examplesp. 165
Self-Monitoring Strategiesp. 167
Cross-Checking: Self-Monitoring at the Sentence Levelp. 168
Step by Stepp. 169
Applications and Examplesp. 170
Periodic Paraphrasing: Monitoring Your Own Understandingp. 173
Step by Stepp. 173
Applications and Examplesp. 175
Self-Monitoring through Imaging and Interacting: Demonstrating Understandingp. 177
Step by Stepp. 177
Applications and Examplesp. 179
Note Taking: Identifying and Monitoring Understanding of Important Informationp. 181
Step by Stepp. 181
Applications and Examplesp. 183
Reciprocal Teaching: A Cooperative Approach to Comprehension Monitoringp. 186
Step by Stepp. 186
Applications and Examplesp. 188
Fix-Up Strategies: Knowing What to Do When Reading Doesn't Make Sensep. 190
Step by Stepp. 191
Applications and Examplesp. 192
SQ4R: Studying for Comprehension and Memoryp. 195
Step by Stepp. 195
Applications and Examplesp. 196
Assessment to Inform Instructionp. 201
Literacy Observation Checklists: Observing and Conferencing to Document and Set Goalsp. 202
Step by Stepp. 202
Applications and Examplesp. 204
Vocabulary Rating: Assessing Word Understanding and Usep. 207
Step by Stepp. 207
Applications and Examplesp. 209
Retelling for Assessment: Using Free Recall to Determine Depth of Understandingp. 210
Step by Stepp. 210
Applications and Examplesp. 213
Comprehension Style Assessment: How Does the Reader Construct Meaning?p. 217
Step by Stepp. 218
Applications and Examplesp. 219
Cloze Assessment: Evaluating the Use of Comprehension Processesp. 222
Step by Stepp. 222
Applications and Examplesp. 224
Think-Aloud: Assessing Comprehension Strategy Usep. 227
Step by Stepp. 227
Applications and Examplesp. 229
Process Questions: Identifying Metacognitive Strategiesp. 231
Step by Stepp. 231
Applications and Examplesp. 233
Question-Answer Relationships: Identifying Question Types and Locating Answersp. 236
Step by Stepp. 238
Applications and Examplesp. 239
Element Interviews: Engaging Students in Interactions Centered on Story Elementsp. 242
Step by Stepp. 242
Applications and Examplesp. 243
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