According to the National Institute for Literacy and the US Census Bureau, fifty percent of Americans are considered functionally illiterate. This means that half of the country can’t read efficiently past a fifth grade level. This is a serious issue.
There are many programs available to help children and adults improve their reading skills, but this doesn’t necessarily mean they have good reading comprehension skills. There are several ways to promote reading comprehension.
This is the first step to promoting reading comprehension skills regardless of your age. The SQ3R Method stands for Survey, Question, Read, Recite, and Review. This method was developed in 1941 by Francis P. Robinson and has worked for millions of people over the years.
Survey – This means you should scan, or look over, the materials. Study any illustrations, charts, and so on. This will give a brief idea of the subject matter you are about to read. When it comes to reading educational materials, such as textbooks, take note on how the information is organized. Read any headings or subheadings. This will give you a better way of knowing what to expect.
Question – As you survey the materials, begin thinking about questions you may have about the material. You may not have all the questions in mind at first, but it will at least get you started in paying attention to details in the materials as you read.
Read – As it states, you need to read the material. Don’t feel overwhelmed. Take it sentence by sentence, paragraph by paragraph. If you are studying learning materials, feel free to take notes. If you come across a word that you don’t understand, look up the meaning before continuing.
Recite – When you come across something of importance, read it again. You can even verbalize it out loud. By reciting important passages, this will help you remember them.
Review – If needed, read the material again. This is definitely important when it comes to learning materials. The more you read the material, the better you will be able to remember what is being conveyed.
The more you read, the easier it is to increase reading comprehension skills. Change up your reading habits. Read the newspaper daily or magazines. Pick up a novel in your favorite genre. Find something new to read and take your time.
If you are a parent wanting to promote reading comprehension skills, encouraging your child to read more will make a big improvement in developing these skills. Find books that interest the child. There are also plenty of children magazines that are designed to be engaging for various age groups. Also consider introducing them to comic books or even the comics in your local newspaper. Show them that reading can be fun and not always stressful.
Reading comprehension worksheets
There are plenty of reading comprehension worksheets available online. This is a good way to promote reading comprehension in children. They read a short passage so they won’t feel overwhelmed and then answer a few questions at the end. Encourage your child to read the questions first so they will know to look for those key elements in the passage they are reading.
Reading is more than just being able to recognize and say a word or group of words. It is about knowing what is being read. It is about remembering what was read. It’s not about developing a photographic memory, but truly learning.
For many people who lack reading comprehension skills are more likely to live a life of poverty. Finding a job will be increasingly difficult and welfare cases will continue to skyrocket. Did you know that many of the current prison systems determine how many beds they will need by how many elementary students score low on the reading assessment tests?
Although teachers are working on improving reading comprehension skills in students, parents can assist the children as well. Most parents want to see their child succeed. As for adults, it is never too late to promote your own reading comprehension skills.