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Author Study: Improving Reading Comprehension Using Inference and Comparison
|Grades||3 – 5|
|Lesson Plan Type||Unit|
|Estimated Time||Seven 45-minute sessions|
Drawing inferences is an important component of reading comprehension, so students need to be aware of both its benefits and its limitations. Beginning with several picture books by Paul Goble, students draw inferences about the author and apply them as they try to detect the errors in an inaccurate biography of the author. They refine their initial impressions through Internet research and correct the inaccuracies through critical comparison of biographical texts. Students then engage in a similar exercise as they study another author or illustrator of their choice, this time creating an author biography with deliberate errors, which will be corrected by a fellow student.
Barton, J. & Sawyer, D.M. (2003). Our students are ready for this: Comprehension instruction in the elementary school. The Reading Teacher, 57(4), 334–347.
- Students need direct comprehension instruction in a variety of ways and using a variety of texts to become better readers, make connections between texts and themselves, become aware of how comprehension strategies work, and use them.
- A focused response deepens student ability to use comprehension strategies from literal through inferential levels.
- Inferring, confirming, and modifying are all activities that keep students involved with the text and provide a purpose for reading and rereading. All three can be used with both fiction and nonfiction texts.