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ERIC Number: EJ818273
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Nov
Pages: 7
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 6
ISSN: ISSN-0013-8274
Constructing Complexity: Using Reading Levels to Differentiate Reading Comprehension Activities
FitzPatrick, Declan
English Journal, v98 n2 p57-63 Nov 2008
The author remembers a class when he asked his students to discuss in small groups how Edgar Allan Poe suggests a judgment of the main character in "The Cask of Amontillado". During their discussion it became clear to the author that the students couldn't come to consensus because they had no grasp of the narrator's explanations of his motivations and actions. He halted the task he had initially set for them and asked them to revisit the story looking for the details that had to have been in place for the narrator's plan to work. The reading levels that provided the author with a specific framework for a task that would match the students' current levels of comprehension and provide support for thinking at higher levels were derived from a set of question types established as a hierarchy by George Hillocks Jr. and Larry H. Ludlow in "American Educational Research Journal" in 1984. As an English teacher, Hillocks developed Reading Level Inventories to determine his students' ability to make increasingly complex inferences about fiction. The author suggests specific methods for employing George Hillocks Jr.'s reading levels to raise students' reading comprehension and support higher order thinking skills. (Contains 4 figures.)
National Council of Teachers of English. 1111 West Kenyon Road, Urbana, IL 61801-1096. Tel: 877-369-6283; Tel: 217-328-3870; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A