Have the students answer basic recall worksheets such as the one above. 

  • The reading passages are often dull, and the questions are very low level thinking.
  • Other than tests, no real reader reads like this.


Read out loud to students. Model and teach the strategies that successful readers use. (From Mosaic of Thought by By Ellin Oliver Keene & Susan Zimmermann).


Questioning. Weak readers gloss over things they don't understand. Strong readers note it and try to figure it out, or keep it as an "ongoing" wonder raising their radar to keep looking for the answer as a lifelong learner. To model, as you read, stop and share what puzzles you. To teach, ask students if they have questions after you read something, or if they wonder something.


Text to Text Connections. Strong readers notice similar themes between books. To model, comment on similarities you see. To teach, ask students if they can see any similarities or differences in the last two books you read.


Text to Self Connections. Strong reader scaffold what they learn to their own life. To model, share "this reminds me of" after you read. To teach, ask the students to share what the book reminded them of. 


As children get stronger, you can layer in partner reading with these discussion. 


For grades 3-8, you can have students read independently and meet in a circle to ask these questions. Asking the same questions will set record grooves to approach reading in this way.

  • Figuring out what you don't understand increases comprehension.
  • These types of questions relate to how adult readers read, and provides the same social motivation that a book club would.