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Reading for Learning: Using Discipline-Based Texts to Build Content Knowledge

by Heather Lattimer

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Reading for Learning: Using Discipline-Based Texts to Build Content Knowledge

Grades 5 – 10
Type Book
Pages 159
Published January 2010
Publisher National Council of Teachers of English



For too long, false perceptions—and often policy—have led teachers to believe they must choose between teaching reading and teaching content. As teachers, however, we know that for students to be successful in all subjects, they must have a strong foundation in reading and writing.

Reading for Learning: Using Discipline-Based Texts to Build Content Knowledge addresses this issue head-on, exploring the reality, which is that reading and content can, and should, go hand-in-hand to support subject area learning.

Drawing on research in human cognition, reading development, and discipline-specific pedagogies, Heather Lattimer provides practical, classroom-tested approaches to helping students access and critically respond to content-based texts, such as:

  • Selecting texts that enhance student learning experiences
  • Using strategies to help focus student readers before they engage with texts
  • Supporting comprehension in content areas through discussion and writing
  • Analyzing texts and applying content learning

Rich in classroom examples, the book strives not to remake content teachers into reading teachers, but instead to support content teachers in using texts to deepen students' understanding of the core ideas, critical information, and ways of thinking in the disciplines.


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