Defining Comprehension Strategies and Instruction Strategies

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Language Arts
Reading Comprehension

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Defining Comprehension Strategies and Instruction Strategies


Students will continue to move through their school career and will be challenged to read many different texts. Some of the text that they will have to read will require them to find and understand the information. It is very important as a teacher to make sure that students can read analyze and comprehend these texts. Teaching the students how different comprehension strategies will support this learning process. “Readers who are unaware of the text structures are at a disadvantage because they do not approach reading with any type of reading plan” (Akhondi, et al., 2012). By using and teaching students to use cognitive and affective aspects with the reading, teachers are helping students to learn how to think about their thinking, and understand what they have read.

Defining Comprehension Strategies and Instruction Strategies

Research based comprehension strategies used by the learner:Story Maps: Having students make a story map is a comprehension strategy that will allow for the students to identify many concepts of a story. Students will use a graphic organizer while reading and after they have read the story. This is also a strategy that can be done individually, in groups or as a whole class. The organizer helps the student identify characters, theme, plot, setting, problems and the solution. The story map will allow for the students to organize their thought to understand better what they are reading. Summarizing: Summarizing is a great strategy to have students do after they have read a text. This strategy teaches the students to explain the important information and the central idea of what they read, in their words. This strategy can be done individually, with groups or as a class. The reason that this strategy is so useful for comprehension is that it will help the student to consolidate and take a large portion of the story and decrease it into the main points. Using both the story map and summarizing strategy together will emphasize in students comprehension of crucial details that support the main idea of the text they are reading. Research based comprehension strategies used by the teacher:Visual Imagery: Visual imagery is a strategy that a teacher can use as an individual, group or whole class activity. This strategy can be used before reading a text, during reading and after reading the text. Reading to the students and asking them to generate a mental image as they hear the story, will help them to engage in the text. Using visual imagery the teacher will need to have a discussion with the students and activate their prior knowledge about the topic. When the teacher is reading the text, they should pause after a sentence or paragraph that has contained descriptive details and information. This will help the students to create the mental image of what they have heard. Depending on the grade level, after the text the teacher can discuss what images the students had. One strategy is to have them illustrate the student’s most vivid image they had during the reading. Have a discussion and talk about what it was the student imagined and what words or descriptions made them think about what was happening. Visual imagery is a strategy that a student can use on their own as well when reading a text. Think, Pair, Share: A good research-based strategy that a teacher can use with their class while doing an assigned reading is think, pair, share. With this strategy, the teacher will come up with selective questions about the text for the students to think and answer individually. Then have students work together in small groups to discuss their ideas and answers and see why others may have answered the question differently. Think, pair, share allows for students to think individually, share ideas with others and will help them to focus their attention on comprehending the text material. An important step for the think, pair, share strategy the teacher needs to remember is to monitor and support the students and ask specific questions about the text to get them to think. After small group discussion having a discussion and sharing with the whole class will expand on the thinking from the students.

Research-based Comprehension strategies

“There’s no strategy that children can learn in their heads to work in cooperative, collaborative groups; but, rather, the teacher needs to create the condition, the procedures, the routines and the understandings that are necessary in the classroom for productive collaborative and cooperative group work” (Reutzel, 2014).

Comparing the comprehension strategies that students use with strategies teacher use to teach comprehension, the main difference is support. When a teacher is teaching the students to use comprehension strategies, they need to make sure that they can model, and show students support. Just as learning anything new, it will take some time for the students to be successful in independently using comprehension strategies. Like building a house there needs to be scaffolding and stages. In the 4th grade, my goal is to start laying down the foundation and showing the students different ways to use comprehension strategies. I will continue to use them throughout the school year, this way they will be more prepared for 5th grade. “To increase students’ stamina teachers should talk to them explicitly and consistently about expectations and the goal of increase capacity” Hiebert & Pearson 2013). Even though this statement is in regards to reading, I feel that its meaning can be used for a variety of other aspects.

In an article by Afferbach, et al (2013), they explain how critical metacognition is for reading success. It is important for teachers to use research-based comprehension strategies, to allow for students to access and be aware of the thinking processes. Using think, pair, share; visual imagery; story maps and summarizing will allow for such thinking processes to happen. The definition of metacognition by Jennifer Livingston (1997) is thinking about thinking. By using the four comprehension strategies for the “Behind the Scenes with Cinderella” lesson, the teacher will enable the students to benefit from learning the process.

Comprehension/Instructional Strategies

In the lesson “Behind the Scenes with Cinderella”, my 4th-grade students will be asked to use their comprehension skills. They will have to explain what they already know about this fable and then I will re-read it to them asking them to use visual imagery. The Cinderella lesson will allow for them to start thinking about the setting and characters along with the moral of the story. Afterward we will read two more “Cinderella” stories by different authors, setting and time periods. The students will be given story map graphic organizers, so they can write down details that they feel are important. The students will work in small “think, pair, share” groups to summarize the comparisons and the differences. I -think that this lesson will get students to realize and think more about how different authors can use the same basic concept and create a completely different story. This lesson will also get my 4th graders to see that using a story map will help them to remember the important details so that they can retell the story later. I would eventually like to have them be comfortable using the story maps so that they may start using them to write their stories.

Behind the Scenes with Cinderella

References: Afflerbach, P., Cho, B.-Y., Kim, J.-Y., Crassas, M. E., & Doyle, B. (2013). Reading: What else matters besides strategies and skills? The Reading Teacher, 66(6), 440–448. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.Akhondi, M., Aziz Malayeri, F., & Abd Samad, A. (2012). How to Teach Expository Text Structure to Facilitate Reading Comprehension. Retrieved from, E. H., & Pearson, P. D. (2013). What happens to the basics? Educational Leadership, 70(4), 48–53. Retrieved from the Walden Library databases.Laureate Education (Producer). (2014g). Conversations with Ray Reutzel: Supporting comprehension [Audio file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.Livingston, J. A. (1997). Metacognition: An Overview. Retrieved from

Student Strategies vs. Teacher Strategies


  • bhiniram5f48de91e45b7 1 year ago

    bhiniram5f48de91e45b7's avatar

    Defining comprehension and learning strategies is the initial task that teachers have to face. The learning strategy should be calculated from the beginning of teaching to the moment of exams. Unfortunately, the training process is not adapted in our college and I use the website to study the test part with the answers as much as possible. On this site I am now looking through the leadership practice test b. This material will help me to prepare for the exam as much as possible.