This week I taught English to my literacy class, who I hadn't taught altogether since Week 8 in term one! Because so much time had passed, and new students have joined, it has felt a little like gaining a new class.
After revising the class norms, it was quickly down to business and I took a few opportunities to read with my students to see what I noticed about their reading. I was particularly interested to read with the students who have made little progress, and to confirm their reading ages (displayed below).
I definitely saw the same traits in my learners as I recorded from the start of the year: they were not monitoring their own understanding of a text. Some of my students developed misconceptions about a text as they misunderstood parts of the text and rejected information that contradicted the view they held. I found that the learners above really struggled to make inferences or access the deeper meaning within a text.
These students are far stronger at decoding than they are at comprehending. To get more insight into their decoding, I provided them with far more challenging texts with academic vocabulary. It was interesting to see that they used a few strategies such as chunking and using phonics, but they didn't use any 'meaning' clues like reading the sentence and working out what word could make sense. Perhaps because they didn't understand the sentence to begin with! They might decode the word but then pronounce it incorrectly, illustrating that it is unfamiliar to them also.
It is now time to collect my next round of student voice and to start implementing my intervention!