Reading Strategies Made Simple

Reading Strategies Made Simple

Over the years, reading has become more and more challenging for students.

Reading is a complex process involving decoding words, reading fluently, and then understanding everything you read.

These processes can create confusion and frustration when they don’t work together to help students understand what they have read. Utilizing various reading strategies will help students become better readers and will also help them understand what they are reading.

There are various reading strategies that can be utilized to help build a student’s overall reading ability. This article will discuss just a few of these many strategies.

Reading Strategies Specifically For Children With Special Needs;

Reading strategies can be utilized throughout the entire reading process.

Some strategies to utilize prior to reading include:

  • Previewing the text
  • Anticipation guide
  • Extending vocabulary

Previewing The Text;

When previewing the text, the purpose of this is learning how to navigate subject-specific textbooks and resources. This strategy allows the students to locate information in different texts while using tables of contents, indices, and/or the navigation bar. When reading informational texts, it is important to use various visual, graphic, and text features which allows you to organize and highlight the important information and illustrate key concepts.

Anticipation Guides;

When using anticipation guides, students go past previewing to examining/analyzing the text and then determine how those features will help the student find and use the information for learning. Some keywords that are used when using anticipation guides are; survey, recite, review, reflect.

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Extending Vocabulary;

Another essential strategy to utilize before reading is; extending vocabulary. This strategy helps the student identify new or unfamiliar words while creating a visual reference.

Some strategies to utilize while reading includes:

  • Using context to find meaning
  • Reading between the lines (inferences)
  • Making notes

Using Context To Find Meaning;

While using context to find meaning, the student is able to read the texts more independently When using this method; the student can discuss concepts, how to find context clues, and use them effectively.

Reading Between The Lines (Inferences);

Allowing students to make inferences is a key to comprehension. This strategy allows the student to draw specific meaning from the text, and connect prior knowledge and experiences to the text in order to make good guesses about what is, what may, or what did happen.

Making Notes;

The making notes strategies help the students to monitor their understanding and help writers/speakers to organize information and clarify their thinking. This strategy also helps students learn a strategy which is beneficial for them when studying for a test, researching, or generating content for a writing task. When using this strategy, the student will learn how to identify important information/details from the text.

Some strategies to utilize after reading include:

  • Drawing conclusions
  • Making judgments
  • Responding to text

These strategies allow the student to review and revisit the text one more time.

Drawing Conclusions;

When the student uses the drawing conclusions strategy (I Read/I Think/Therefore), they develop content/opinions for persuasive writing. This strategy also allows the student to be a thoughtful speaker during class discussions. This allows the student to gather information and decide which information is important and which is not.

Making Judgements;

When using the making judgments strategy, the student increases their understanding by reviewing what was read, then reflecting on their learning, and then asking questions about the importance. This strategy also allows the student to assess different viewpoints/perspectives and make judgments.

Responding To Text;

When using the responding to text strategy, the student is given an opportunity to make personal connections to a specific topic or unit by expressing their thoughts/ideas/questions and making positive connections based on prior knowledge and experience. This strategy allows the student to expand their understanding of the reading by seeing/hearing ideas/thoughts/questions of others.

Do you have any strategies that help with teaching reading? Please leave them in the comments below!


Picture of Amanda Wagoner, MAT

Amanda Wagoner, MAT

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