Facilitating Comprehension by wuyunqing


									      Rich Talk about Text

          P. David Pearson
     Graduate School of Education
       University of California,

        Reminders from Scott
• Close Reading
   – What do you think?
   – What makes you think so?
• Teachers, like readers, develop both a text base
  and a situation model for the PD we offer to
   – Hence the variability in uptake and implementation.
   – Stay the course, just in time feedback…
• Teaching for Cognitive Engagement
• Look for presentations by me
• Also a site to learn more about the work I
  am doing on science and literacy with
  primary grade kids.
           Some assumptions
• You have in place a program of comprehension
  instruction for skills and strategies
   – Reciprocal Teaching
   – Transactional Strategies Instruction
• You have taken a position on what sort of
  assessments you are you going to use to assess
  students’ growth in reading
   – I like performance assessments--open ended, but…
              This is a goal
• For every child
• In every classroom
• In every grade
• Being satisfied with good decoding and word
  recognition is not enough
• Being satisfied with great fluency is not enough
• It is comprehension, understanding, enjoyment,
  and insight for every child.
           Talk about Text
• An environment rich in high-quality talk
  about text.
  – teacher-to-student
  – student-to-student talk.
• Many levels
  – Text base: clarifying and connecting
  – Situation model: relating, interpreting
  – Critique and evaluation
   We have pretty good models
   and research on this score
 •Instructional Conversations
 •Questioning the Author
 •Junior Great Books
                                •Book Club
                                •Literature Circle
  Aesthetic-Expressive          •Grand Conversations
•Collaborative Reasoning
•Paidea Seminar                    Critical Analytic
•Philosophy for Children
  Murphy et al Meta-analysis
• What’s the underlying theory of all of
  these interventions?

      Change talk:   Change            Change
      focus and      understanding     comprehension
      distribution   of text at hand   repertoire
         Summary findings
• Pre-post effects   • Most things work
  are more             to a degree
  impressive than    • Kids get better
  comparative          with help…and
  effects.             maybe without it
        Summary findings
• Effects are more   • Transfer is hard
  impressive on      • or
  researcher         • Standardized tests
  designed than        are insensitive.
  distal measures.
         Summary findings
• Stronger effects   • Changes in
  on talk than         participation are a
  comprehension.       necessary but not a
                       sufficient condition
                       for comp
         Summary findings
• Some evidence of      • Probably means you
  you get what you        gotta do it all…
  pay for, especially      • Literal
  for critical             • Inferential
  thinking.                • Critical
        Summary findings
• Seems to be more   • Ironically, most of us
  important for        spend more
  average and low      discussion time with
                       the high achievers
                     • Beware self-delusion
         Summary findings
• Time matters:      • Stay the course
  longer is better   • Ironically, we tend to
                       discard things
         Research failing
• Some don’t       • Insist on measures of
  measure            talk and
  comprehension      comprehension.
                   • Measure many kinds
• Don’t measure      of comprehension,
  many types of      including stuff not
  comprehension      directly taught.
A great example from New
Toughest Problem: Promoting
 higher level talk about text
• In our CIERA work, the good news is
  that when we see it, it improves learning
  and achievement, but…
• The bad news is that we don’t see it very
                                         Supporting talk about text
Conversational Move        Definition                             Example (Student talk)                      Scaffolds (Teacher talk)
Restating                  Repeating a previous contribution      Linda said that the fish was sad,           Can someone say that in a different way?
                                                                  because he was lonely.
Inviting                   Inviting a participant to contribute    d
                                                                  IÕ like to hear what George thinks.         Do you want to invite anyone else to add to what you
Acknowledging or           Recognizing a response without         I can see why you said that.                Do you get wh at Juan is trying to say here?
validating                 agreeing or disagreeing                                re
                                                                  I get what youÕ saying.
                                                                  I hadnÕ thought of that.
Focusing/refocusing        Making a metacomment about the         We were talking about the reasons that      I think IÕ lost track of the question we were trying to
                           course of the conversation             Frank ran away from home.                   answer. Can anyone help me here?
Agreeing                                                          I agree, becauseÉ                           Does anyone agree with Juan? (agreeing)
                                                                  ThatÕs ight, becauseÉ
Disagreeing                                                                       re
                                                                  I see what youÕ saying, butÉ                Does anyone want to disagree?
                                                                  But wh at aboutÉ?                           Does anyone see it another way?
                                                                  I disagree, becauseÉ                        Do you all see this the same way as Juan?
Elaborating                Extending oneÕsown or anotherÕs        I agree with Juan that the fish was         Does anyone want to say something more about that?
                           assertion                              lonely, and I think that he...              Who can think of another solution or another reason?
Requesting clarification                                          What do you mean? Can you say more          Does anyone want to raise any questions about the point
or elaboration                                                    about that? What makes you think that?      that Juan is trying to make?
                                                                                                              Anyone find anything confusing in this part of the story?
Providing an example       Providing an example from inside       For exampleÉ                                Can you give an example of É from the story?
                           of the text or outside to support      ItÕslike whenÉ                              Has anything like this ever happened to you or someone
                           oneÕs o or anotherÕsassertion.
                                   wn                                                                         you know?
                           Examples can be explanatory or                                                     Can you think of an example from another story by this
                           evidentiary                                                                        author?
Signaling a change         Changing the direction of the          I want to talk about the mother.            Does anyone want to change the subject?
                           conversation                                                                       Are you ready to move on?
                                                                                                              Does anyone want to ask a different question?
Providing evidence                         s
                           Supporting oneÕ own or                 I agree with Julie that the fish was sad.   Why do you think that?
                           anotherÕsassertions with evidence      You can see his sad face in the picture     Anything in the story to support that idea?
                                                                  on page 3.                                  Can you point to something in the text that makes you
                                                                                                              think that?
Posing a question to the                                          Does anyone thinkÉ ?                        Do you have a question for the group?

Same teacher--more scaffolding
Different Teacher--More Novice
 Kids: Even more scaffolding
  The nature and amount of
scaffolding is a matter of being



            Texts and Tasks
Gradual Release of Responsibility
              With any luck, we move this way (----->) over time.

          Gradual Release of Responsibility
      0                     Student Responsibility                  100
  Changing Teacher Roles
High Teacher                          Low Teacher
Low Student                      High Student

Explicit Instruction


  Au and Raphael                      Participating
From Duke & Pearson
The Rand                       A variant of
               Sociocultural   Kintsch’s model



          Questions for Stories
• Read the text for the big ideas
• Generate some probes to get at them
   – Go from general to specific
       • So what is important about this story?
       • So is this story more about the plot or the characters?
       • So what does this story tell us about how human beings look out
         for one another?
   – Go for Response before Comprehension
   – Go for comprehension to support response or claims: facts in
     the service of claims about the world—Accountable Talk
   – Work for a unified understanding of plot, character, feelings,
       • Somewhere Somebody Wanted a Problem Solved…
    Generating Questions for
       Expository Pieces
• Read the text
• Record what you think are the big ideas
• Read it again, looking for connections
  among the big ideas*
• Generate a set of questions that will get
  you the big ideas and the connections
  between them.
  *When you can’t find big ideas and relations among
  them, question whether to use the text!
    Talk, Skills and Strategies
• Conversations about stories and informational
  texts can be a context in which a lot of good
  strategy instruction CAN occur, if we are
  willing to seize teachable moments (just in time
  teaching) to show kids how to use strategies to
  solve problems and make text sensible.
• That’s the genius of Instructional
• That’s what happens in good RT conversations.
    Contextualizing what I have
•   A good model
•   Solid instruction
•   Thoughtful assessment
•   Supportive instructional environment
What that supportive context
          can do...

              Daniella using all the cues
    This is a Formula for a
 Renaissance (maybe a revival?)

• A great deal of time spent actually
                   The nature of texts
• The texts are interesting and comprehensible and
  sufficiently varied so that all students can find texts to
  relate to (interest and motivation).
• Daily, students read texts that are personally
  interesting and easy to read. Why? So that students
  can consolidate their learning of skills and strategies.
• Also on a daily basis, students read, with teacher
  support, more challenging texts. Why? In order to
  stretch their knowledge and skill repertoire.
  Establish tomorrow’s prior knowledge.
                    The nature of texts in
                     effective programs
    1. While common sense suggests that some of these texts
        should allow students to apply the decoding and
        comprehension skills they are learning, there is
        precious little evidence to support the creation and use
        of special instructional texts for this purpose.

2. The current corpus of
  children’s books contains
  numerous texts that provide
  many of the opportunities
  students need.
• The big ruckus from the National
  Reading Panel
• Should we promote independent reading?
  What people think NRP says
• Don’t provide time for independent
      What NRP really says
• The evidence is too sketchy to draw any
  conclusion one way or another…
  – About school-based programs to promote
    independent reading
     • DEAR
     • SSSR
            My own view
• The lack of credible evidence one way or
  another is no basis for getting rid of programs
  that have other virtues
• Is reading the only phenomenon in human
  experience that doesn’t get better with practice
• If you do it, do it right and do it well
   – Make sure kids have things to read
   – Make sure kids DO read
   – Provide incentives and support
Comprehension Activities in K
       and early 1
• In the context of teacher read alouds
• Why?
  – Texts that merit the sort of engagement and
    depth of thinking we want to promote.
  – Finesse the decoding issue
• Warning: You can’t stay there forever.
  Must get to texts kids read themselves
• Experience reading real texts for real
  Beware the textoid problem
• When we select texts that have been
  especially written to permit some sort of
  skill activity
• We run the risk of reifying these texts
• Making real something that isn’t
• They only exist on tests and workbook
  materials designed to get you ready to
  take the tests.
Sue’s grandmother lives on a farm. Ellen’s
grandmother lives in the city. Sue’s
grandmother, who just turned 55, phones Sue
every month. Ellen’s grandmother, who is also
55, sends Ellen e-mails several times a week.
Both grandmothers love their granddaughters.
• How are Sue and Ellen’s grandmothers alike?
   – They both love their granddaughters
   – They both use e-mail
   – They both live on a farm
• How are they different?
   – They live in different places
   – They have different color hair
   – They are different ages
• Experience reading at least the range of text
  genres that we wish students to comprehend.
   – Substantial experience reading and writing it.
   – No automatic transfer across genres
A special note on the narrative
centrism in primary instruction
• Why shouldn’t we just focus on stories?
• We surely want to include instruction and
  activities in response to stories, but…
• We don’t want to limit our instruction and
  activities to stories
  – The range issue
  – The power of information
  – Individual differences in preference and interest
• It really matters
• Later today
    Enabling skills: Decoding,
    Fluency, and Monitoring
• Substantial facility in the accurate and
  automatic decoding of words.
• Necessary but not sufficient for
When rules get in the way…
• Lots of time spent writing texts for others to
  comprehend. Again, students should experience
  writing the range of genres we wish them to be
  able to comprehend. Their instruction should
  emphasize connections between reading and
  writing, developing students’ abilities to write
  like a reader and read like a writer.
  Why Writing Helps Reading
• You can’t write without reading: the writer’s first
• When you write, you often seek information through
• Writing makes the metaphor “constructing a model of
  meaning” completely explicit.
• Writing helps us decide what we really “think” about a
  topic (stares back at you).
• Writing makes metacognition transparent (makes
  monitoring visible)
  Why Writing Helps Reading
• Writing reinforces some reading processes
  – An authentic context for phonemic awareness (listen
    to the word in parts, match a letter to each part)
  – Examining claim and support is like unearthing the
    relationship between MI and Details
• By the way, reading helps writing too--by
  providing good models of well-crafted prose,
  spelling, and punctuation.

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