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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Reciprocal Reading Ideas Wanted

Reciprocal Reading Ideas Wanted

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Hello all,

I have a class of 3rd graders who are ELL's and have low reading levels. I am looking to implement reciprocal reading in my small groups. I have found some information on-line that looks useful.

My questions are...Who has implemented reciprocal reading and what are some of the "bumps" I should expect/anticipate when I begin this in my class. And would anyone like to share some advice?

Thank you!

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Whitney Hoffman's picture
Whitney Hoffman
Producer LD Podcast, Digital Media Consultant, Author

Reading rockets has a great set of tools to support reciprocal reading, including a video here http://www.readingrockets.org/strategies/reciprocal_teaching/

This is not my area of expertise, but working with kids with LD and low reading levels is something I can help with, and I think it may be similar. I assume wtih the ELL students you're working both on fluency and comprehension. With LD students, making sure they have opportunities for success (and celebrating those milestones) and slowly building up to more challenging material is important. When working with reciprocal reading, I'd try to make sure the groups are well matched by skill level, so no student feels less able than the others and put on the spot, especially if we're talking about reading aloud in a group.
My son had trouble learning how to read, and we put a small incentive plan in place to encourage him to choose books to read aloud to me, and he could work towards a big goal by the number of books he had read. Yes, it's basic behavioralism, but especially since reading is a skill, you don't "unlearn" it once the reward structure has been removed and the incentives are no longer there. Maybe suggesting some of these sorts of activities to parents? They may or may not be able to support additional reading out loud at home, but it could help.
This may not be realistic, but these strategies really helped us both at home and with other kids struggling with reading in the LD context. Maybe it would work equally well in ELL?

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