Just reading: increasing pace and volume of reading whole narratives on the comprehension of poorer adolescent readers in English classrooms

Westbrook, Jo, Sutherland, Julia, Oakhill, Jane and Sullivan, Susan (2018) Just reading: increasing pace and volume of reading whole narratives on the comprehension of poorer adolescent readers in English classrooms. Literacy. ISSN 1741-4350

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Abstract

Poorer adolescent readers are often regarded by teachers as unable to read whole narratives and given short, simplified texts, yet are expected to analyse every part in a slow laborious read through. This article reports on a mixed methods study in which 20 English teachers in the South of England changed their current practice to read two whole challenging novels at a faster pace than usual in 12 weeks with their average and poorer readers ages 12-13. Ten teachers received additional training in teaching comprehension. Students in both groups made 8.5 months’ mean progress on standardised tests of reading comprehension, but the poorer readers made a surprising 16 months progress but with no difference made by the training programme. Simply reading challenging, complex novels aloud and at a fast pace in each lesson repositioned ‘poorer readers’ as ’good’ readers, giving them a more engaged uninterrupted reading experience over a sustained period. However, the qualitative data showed that teachers with the additional training provided a more coherent faster read and better supported poorer readers by explicitly teaching inference, diagnosed students’ ‘sticking places’ mid-text and created socially cohesive guided reading groups that further supported weaker readers but also stretched the average/good readers.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Education and Social Work > Education
Subjects: L Education
Depositing User: Deeptima Massey
Date Deposited: 27 Oct 2017 09:05
Last Modified: 20 Mar 2018 13:08
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/70702

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