Welcome to my blog! I'm Karen Belt, a fourth year teacher working at Lynmore Primary School in Rotorua, New Zealand. I'm teaching in a Year 3 class using iPads to engage and motivate learners and improve student achievement. This blog documents my teaching journey and my learning processes with iPads in the classroom. I've proud of having been a member of the inaugural Manaiakalani Digital Teaching Academy(MDTA) program and last year a Spark Manaiakalani Innovative Teacher (MIT) and Manaiakalani Google Class OnAir teacher.

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

Sound bites for comprehension

As my learners move up through the reading levels I want them to be aware they are reading for a purpose and that they need to understand what they are reading.  One of the ways we do this are through comprehension questions which ask them about what they have read.

While I often ask follow up questions during my guided reading session, I am also keen to include comprehension questions in my follow up Explain Everything projects which the learners work on independently.  I have done this in the past but found that learners can sometimes be tripped up by having to "read the questions."  They understand the question if its given to them orally, but may not be able to read all the words used if they have to read it - and its not always possible to phrase it in a way that it uses words that I know they will be able to read and understand.

I've recently tried using sound bites to ask the comprehension questions as part of their project, which is proving extremely successful.  The learner is able to listen to the question and then find the answer in their book and write it onto the page.

An example of this, for the book "The Duck with a Broken Wing" (this is one of six slides in the project for one group of learners who are reading this book later this week):


I've found using soundbites so successful that I am beginning to add them to many of the pages I create.  This allows the learner to listen to the instructions again and prevents them having to return to my desk if they have forgotten what I said when I scaffolded the project.   In most cases the sound bite is exactly the same as the text on the page so the learners are able to listen and follow along with the words.


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