Good readers make
      good learners

          Jack Scholes
Email: jack.scholes@terra.com.br

1.   Intensive x extensive reading
2.   Why? Research studies
3.   How? Ground rules
4.   Getting started
5.   Time to read – DEAR
6.   After reading
       INTENSIVE                  EXTENSIVE
In class                    Outside class
T chooses what & how        Ss choose what & how
Concerned with form         Concerned with content
To develop reading skills  To develop habit of
Text for language learning Reading for pleasure
Maximum comprehension General comprehension
Ss do detailed exercises    Exercises not focused on
                  2. Why?
Research studies show that extensive
reading improves:
1. Reading skills
2. Writing skills
3. Vocabulary
4. Grammar
5. Listening & speaking skills
6. Exam results
            3. Ground Rules

1. Ss choose what to read

2. Variety of material

3. Wide range of topics

4. Materials within Ss competence
Bruno prgiab what he lur mtswt for a
pzcndi and fst knbe on a kiv mbyr in
jbyat of the gutrf. He ztiyrd out to gst
with a lhyag sruio on his face, jlaur in
ttuagt ki he mtishjg a kerbdygft’d yusr.
It gru a hot, sjyiar day miry dfit summer
days in Rio de Janeiro.
Bruno stopped what he was doing for a
moment and sat down on a low wall in
front of the beach. He stared out to sea
with a katif smile on his face, lost in
thought as he enjoyed a moment’s rest.
It was a hot, leyrok day like most
summer days in Rio de Janeiro.
5. Reading is individual & silent

6. Ss read as much as possible, and at
  their own pace

7. Reading is for pleasure

8. Purpose is general understanding

9. Reading is its own reward
10. T’s role:
• Explain aims, methodology, importance

• Discuss Ss worries, fears beforehand

• Guide Ss to get most out of reading

• Motivate and encourage with before,
  during & after reading activities
           4. Getting started

“My students don’t read in their own
language. How on earth can I get them
to read in English?”

To arouse curiosity / get students ready
and eager to read
              1. Use the cover

Ss predict what book is about from title,
cover picture, back cover blurb

Ss choose book and introduce to others

What genre - adventure, thriller, love story?
• Copy titles and blurbs on to separate

Ss match title and blurb

Ss can prepare cards for each other
Bruno, a poor coconut seller from the favela,
meets Clara, a beautiful rich girl from Rio de
Janeiro’s wealthy Ipanema area, and they fall in
love. But Clara’s father doesn’t approve and stops
the realtionship.

Then Zeca, a criminal from Bruno’s past, tries to
blackmail Bruno into helping him make some easy
money. Can Bruno stop Zeca, save Clara and
convince Clara’s father that he is right for his
• Write 3 questions about the book

• Complete the sentences from the book

1. He was slim and good-looking with……
2. Bruno lived in a favela…
3. Soon after the police raid, Bruno and
• How far do you agree with the following

Things are not the way they are just
because that’s the way they are. We can
change things. We can live the life we

A movie or a book can really impress you
and completely change your way of
You should only date people of the same
race or from the same socio-economic
background as yourself.

It’s okay to bully people who are smaller
or weaker than yourself.

‘The end justifies the means.’
            2. Use the title

• Read out first paragraph of 3 books

Ss make up suitable titles
Guess which title goes with which
• Copy titles and extracts from books
on to separate cards

Ss match title and extracts

Ss can prepare cards for each other
          3. Use the pictures

• Pick out main characters –
what do illustrations tell us about them?

Write down + description of characters
appearance/ personality – discuss
Keep / check after reading
poor        tough      bad-tempered
optimistic    rich     menacing
enthusiastic muscular     gorgeous
thug      hard-working   fair-skinned
anxious      criminal  shy
• What’s happening in picture?

• Write dialogue / act out

• Write captions for the pictures

• Photocopy illustrations – put in order
Tell / write story – check after reading
         4. Reflection Boxes

Draw links between the themes
explored and readers’ own lives and
Simple, everyday subjects
More personal, tricky issues
            5. Use the text
• Ss read book in 2 minutes

Cover, blurb, pictures, first and last
paragraph, plus quick flick through

Ss then tell each other what they think
book is about
• Copy first and last paragraphs of
several books on to cards identified
with numbers and letters

Mix up cards

Ss match beginnings and endings

Ss make up story to connect
• Mix up sentences from first paragraph

Ss sort them out

Variation - mix up sentences from first
paragraphs of two books
Then he took a couple of deep breaths. He
had never been anywhere like this before
in his life. At five minutes to eight, Bruno
was standing outside the restaurant. Okay,
here we go, he said to himself and he
opened the main door. Beads of sweat
started to roll down his face as he stood
petrified between two large marble pillars,
staring at the door.
At five minutes to eight, Bruno was
standing outside the restaurant. He had
never been anywhere like this before in his
life. Beads of sweat started to roll down his
face as he stood petrified between two
large marble pillars, staring at the door.
Then he took a couple of deep breaths.
Okay, here we go, he said to himself and
he opened the main door.
• Chain stories - sentence from book
“This was the day Bruno’s life was going to
change forever.”

Each S adds a sentence to continue story
If difficult, can say ‘Pass’

To vary order, each S chooses next person
In large class, do in groups and compare
Record on small tape recorder + play back
         5. Time to read – DEAR
 In-class activities

• Free time – reading, browsing, writing

• T reads aloud to Ss or Ss listen to
Ss can silently read text
Read in instalments – create suspense
• Repeated timed readings

Ss read silently – mark where start
Stop after 2-3 minutes – mark where
Return to beginning, mark, repeat 3X
Individualized, non-competitive challenge
Builds confidence
Good way to start silent reading
• Sustained silent reading – regular 20
minutes – Ss + T (or checks doubts)

= Drop Everything And Read

Clap hands, shout, ‘DEAR time!’
Ss & YOU read for about 10 minutes
             6. After reading

Personal Response

• Did you like the story? Why /why not?
• Is there anything you would like to
  change in the story? Give details.
• Suggest other ways in which the story
  could end.

True / false / doesn’t say
Answer questions

Write a 150-word summary, but
deliberately include 3 incorrect pieces of
information. Exchange with a partner and
try to discover the mistakes

• Who is your favourite character?
Explain why

Plot and theme

• Write a short summary of the events
  in the story by retelling it from the
  point of view of one of the characters
Grammar, vocabulary, collocations

With links to websites

• Cyber-bullying

• Favelas
The Virtuous Circle of Reading

  The more students read,
  The better they get at it.
 And the better they are at it,
    The more they read.
            Helbling Readers

Red Series – 11-14 year-olds
Blue Series – Teens / young adults

Accompanying audio CD
Rich variety of before and after activities
Reflection boxes throughout story, make
parallels with student’s own life &
Audio books – full version of story on MP3

Downloadable worksheets for each book

Downloadable teacher’s guide



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