Key reading comprehension skills
There are 4 main comprehension reading skills. These are:
• Interpreting authorial techniques
This is the ability where to find, interpret and understand literal information.
This is the ability to use logic and reasoning to deduce further or implied information.
For example, if Sally is wearing a yellow jumper and Poppy is wearing the same colour of jumper as Sally, we can deduce Poppy must be wearing a yellow jumper. The answer is certain.
This is the ability to assume further information from the facts presented although it is not certain. It is probable but more like an educated guess. It must however be based on textual evidence.
For example, if Sally always seems to wear a yellow jumper on Monday and today is Sunday. We can infer that Sally is most likely to wear a yellow jumper tomorrow. It is not certain but the inference has some basis.
Interpreting authorial techniques and literary devices
This is the ability to gain a closer understanding to an author’s intentions by interpreting their careful word choice or the way the text is presented.
Authors use a range of authorial techniques or language devices to steer and influence a reader either to give greater clarity, emphasis or paint a picture in the mind’s eye of the reader e.g. a flashback, personification, metaphor, alliteration, use of italics, bold print, subheadings, bullet points etc.
For example, if the writer writes that the car roared like a like lion, the purpose is to give the reader the impression or image that the car is a powerful noisy car by comparing with a lion with similar qualities.
Reading for meaning
Children are taught to read for meaning from the outset through discussion, planned activities and questioning. The quality of questioning and the ability of the teacher to guide readers to seek and interpret clues and search for meaning beyond the literal is critical otherwise children may continue to read texts at a superficial level and not understand what the author intended to convey.
Questioning is used to explore complex ideas, to get to the truth of things, to open up issues and problems, to uncover assumptions, to analyse concepts, to distinguish what we know from what we do not know, to follow out logical consequences of thought or to control discussions.
At Stisted we have a four reads policy. We ask that the children read at home with an adult at least 4 times a week to support their reading knowledge and skill and to help develop their love of reading.