Read Questions First for Reading Comprehension?

In my experience, the answer is a definite, “No!” Do not read the questions before reading an article. Why?

I have found that when students read the questions first, they only look for answers to the questions in the reading, but they miss the “connective tissue” of the meaning leading up to the answers to the questions. They only look in the passage for the same words that are used in the question without making true meaning or comprehension.

Then what does a student do? How should a student read?

The student should read the passage paragraph by paragraph- stopping in the paragraph to understand meaning and at the end of the paragraph to summarize what was read. Another tool that should be used is dictionary work while reading. Any words that cannot be pronounced or the student does not know the meaning of should be found. My students use Dictionary.com. It provides the pronunciation of words as well as the meanings.

This style of reading takes practice. Answering comprehension questions at the end of the reading is important. The reading can be leveled by grade or ability to read.

Any questions? Contact Beth Silver at: bethcarolsilver@gmail.com. Look at Beth’s website: http://www.educationsage.net.

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