To begin our year in English Language Arts, we discussed various “levels” of being “able” to read. At the very base level is decoding, the ability to equate letters with sounds to “read” words. After decoding, an emphasis is usually put on fluency followed by comprehension. What our class will focus on this year is the ability to think while reading.
Our discussion began with the students “thinking” about the word “home” and what that means to them. We then discussed how the seemingly simple term can mean so many varying things to each person in the class. We noted how individuals, when reading the same text, can connect to the text in so many different ways.
Our first focus of thinking while reading is on connecting. While reading students can make text-to-self connections, text-to-text connections, and text-to-world connections. We ended class with a read aloud of the beginning of the novel The Hunger Games, with students making note of and sharing their connections to the text.