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ERIC Number: EJ1108419
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 11
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0040-0599
Using Read-Alouds to Help Struggling Readers Access and Comprehend Complex, Informational Text
Santoro, Lana Edwards; Baker, Scott K.; Fien, Hank; Smith, Jean Louise M.; Chard, David J.
TEACHING Exceptional Children, v48 n6 p282-292 Jul-Aug 2016
The use of informational texts in the elementary grades provides a context for helping students develop content understanding and domain knowledge across a wide range of subject matter. Reading informational text also provides students with the language of thought, foundational vocabulary that can be connected to other words, and technical content or subject-area understanding that frames how readers see themselves and the world (Pinker, 2007). Fascinating and educationally important words and worlds are found in informational text, but for students who struggle with reading or have a learning disability, informational text is often extremely challenging to access because of their limited vocabulary knowledge and conceptual understanding of a particular topic (Nation, 2007). A vignette is used throughout this article to demonstrate how a teacher is preparing his special education students for a general education science unit on insects. To expose students to the sophisticated vocabulary and content required for the science unit, the teacher purposefully selects multiple, thematically linked informational texts to use in his small-group read-alouds. Because the teacher will be using a framework of explicit instruction for comprehension, vocabulary, and text based discussion, he confidently selects informational text that is complex in structure. By using read-alouds, and oral language as the context, the teacher also knows that he can introduce students to complex text without the demands of proficient reading skills as a precondition for figuring out meaning. By following the instructional framework for using read-alouds with informational text presented in this article (Table 1), The students no longer flounder inside the text's complex structure. The teacher now sees students who are interested in learning about insects and motivated to engage and interact with informational text.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Institute of Education Sciences (ED)
Authoring Institution: N/A
IES Funded: Yes
Grant or Contract Numbers: R305G050216