Reading comprehension problems (whole class)

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by luvmykids, Mar 25, 2006.

  1. luvmykids

    luvmykids Companion

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    Mar 25, 2006

    I teach third grade and we just finished our first round of practice tests for the upcomming SOL tests in May. I have idnetified 3 main areas my whole class is really struggling with. They have a hard time picking the main idea for a given selection, summarizing and identifying fact or opinion. My problem is that the other teachers I work with are weak in the exact areas (we all missed the same questions on the test). I feel like I go over these things everyday with each of our reading stories but it is obviously not enough. Does anyone have any suggestions what I can be doing differently with my class? :confused:
     
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  3. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

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    Mar 25, 2006

    For fact and opinion I have my students make a flip book. They get to pick their own topic (with approval) and then they use four pages to write an opinion and a picture on each page, and the same for facts. Example: (fact) Ohio has 88 counties. (opinion) Ohio has the best amusement parks in the US.
    I also help them pick out opinion type words: best, should, etc. Also for facts, we talk about how you could find evidence to support what you said.
     
  4. luvmykids

    luvmykids Companion

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    Mar 25, 2006

    Oh that's a great idea. Thanks!
     
  5. src1105teach

    src1105teach Rookie

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    Mar 25, 2006

    I am working on summarizing now with my students. We first made a teaching chart together. (To understand what summarizing is in general.) Then I used picture books to model and practice with the whole class. We are working on finding the most important information from the Beginning, middle, and end of the book. Then in our own words we practice writing the summary together. I think that modeling is key to summarizing. They are very young in third grade and they need help understanding why you would summary text. You could also have them break a piece of paper into 3 parts and draw a picture of the most important information from the b/e/m of the story. Have them practice telling a partner what the most important information was and then writing. I think it would be easier for them if they could verbally tell someone first before writing. I am not sure if this is what you are looking for, but I hope it helps.
     
  6. DaTeach

    DaTeach Comrade

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    Mar 25, 2006

    I model summarizing on the board/overhead a lot. It is a very difficult skill for 4th grade students. First we complete a graphic organizer naming who, what, when, where, and how. Then we take that information and write a paragraph that sums up the story. For book reports, students are also asked to give their opinion of the book. Did they like it? Why or why not? What was their favorite part? etc.
     
  7. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    Mar 26, 2006

    luvmykids,
    Main idea is always difficult in 3rd grade, as is author's purpose. For fact and opinion, I move much of that into social studies. For example, as we are studying Rosa Parks and Thurgood Marshall, we pick out facts and opinions. We then write three facts about each, as well as three of our own opinions. Once children get the idea that "Thurgood Marshall was the first African-American Supreme Court Justice" is a fact, but "Thurgood Marshall was a good leader" is an opinion, they have a much easier time picking it out in reading. Make certain to teach them the "code words" for opinions, such as should, good, best, etc.

    I teach 3rd grade in Virginia, so I know what you are struggling with. Good luck and I wish your students every success.
     
  8. BeccaK

    BeccaK Companion

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    Mar 26, 2006

    -There are 3 basic parts of a story:
    Setting, initiating event and out come

    beginning, middle and end
    pick out major key events
    who, what, where
    initiating events = cause a change
    outcome

    -where did the story happen?
    -what was the problem?
    -how did they try to solve the problem?
    -how did the story end?


    -this should help them understand the whole story.

    -Finding the Main Idea:

    have the students trace their hands and use as follows:
    palm = main idea
    fingers = details
    Story Grammar- how the story is organized.
    A good way of teaching story grammar is by using the recipe for a story
    handout available in the downloads menu.
    Another way of teaching story grammar is by using the story retelling
    handout, also available in the downloads menu.(there are two types of this
    sheet, one for any story and one for informational text)

    It is important for children to be able to tell the difference in how a story is
    organized. If the children cannot decipher wht they are reading, they may end
    up confused about the main idea of the story.

    There are five different ways a story or sentence can be set up:
    description
    cause/effect
    compare/contrast
    problem/solution
    sequence

    I also have a handout that works well for main ideas..if you would like it i can put a link to it on my downloads menu of my website. Please PM me if you would like me to do this!
     

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