Essay on Reading Comprehension

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Reading Comprehension In any interaction with a text, the text is pretty much useless unless the reader can comprehend the meaning of that text. Since narrative, expository, and poetic texts all have different reasons for being written, and different forms of presenting the text, different strategies are needed to comprehend these texts. There are also many reading strategies that can be used for all of these types of text. In order to describe strategies to help develop activities that facilitate comprehension of narrative, expository, and poetic texts one must first have an understanding of what comprehension means, they then need a better understanding of how the human brain works. “Comprehension is a creative, multifaceted …show more content…
If there are no changes in long-term memory, nothing has been understood or learned.” (Sweller, 2005) The competent comprehender is a skilled reader. “Skilled readers are those who actively and automatically construct meaning as they read; they are self-motivated and self-directed; they monitor their own comprehension by questioning, reviewing, revising, and rereading to enhance their overall comprehension.” (Douglas Fisher, 2011) One other skill that is crucial to being a skilled reader and comprehending text is the fluency with which a student reads. Teaching fluency skills is a very important aspect of helping a student comprehend what they are reading. If a student is using all of the short term memory decoding words and sentence stucture, there is very little left to work on the process for gaining meaning from the text. The most common strategies used to improve fluency are; adding vocabulary to the students long-term memory, activating background knowledge (schema), modeling, and having the student read.
So what are other strategies that can be used to help the non-skilled student comprehend what they are reading? “The most important comprehension strategies for struggling readers are activating background knowledge, determing importance, summarizing, questioning, visualizing and monitoring.” (Tompkins, 2010, p. 267)
Background knowledge helps the student with both fluency and the understanding