Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Reading strategy guide series #2

From the Making Meaning Manual:
Readers use retelling to identify and remember key information in a text.  They focus on the important ideas or sequence of events as a way of identifying what they need to know or recall."

Here are questions you can ask your young readers to help them develop this reading strategy:
  • What has happened in the story so far?
  • Looking at the pictures, but without reading,  ask: Can you tell me what happened in this part of the story?
  • During a second reading ask: what is going to happen next? What happens at the end of the story? What did you learn about the story today that you missed the first time you heard it?
  • For advance readers you can construct an outline of what the story might be about before reading it.  Later compare the outline to one made after reading the book.
  • Create a story map of events (see example below)
Now let's be practical.  How does this work with a book like: Goldilocks and the Three Bears (just to name a popular one)?

Read the story and ask: what has happened after you read a few pages, and again at the end of the story. Good places to stop and ask will be: once Goldilocks got in the three bears' house, when she fell sleep, and at the end.  Make an illustrated story map (think of it as a treasure map and not in the space/architectural sense). Draw pictures of Goldilocks leaving her house, going through the bears house, and running home.

Note that in retelling, we are moving to focus on the story's events.  We are not adding any connections to the reader's experiences or knowledge. Retelling is based only on what we are reading from the story.  We organize it to be able to understand it better.  Retelling is a favorite for little kids as they pretend to read while in fact their are retelling what they heard.  Retelling is an amazingly important reading strategy because it is the foundation to more complicated strategies like making inferences, and summarizing.

Here is an example of Retelling that I did with my kids a while ago: Book:  Lions at Lunchtime by Mary Pope Osborne.

We read the book and made a map of the animals the characters encountered in their adventure.  We were focusing on the sequences of the events.

Enjoy retelling and remembering a favorite or a new story together!

Next week: Wondering/Questioning

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Thank you for sharing!