"I Read It, But I Don't Get It" by Cris Tovani is definitely a must read for future teachers. Cris Tovani is a High School Teacher who teaches her students strategies to ensure that they will be able to conquer difficult texts. There are many strategies in which Cris Tovani models. Tovani stresses the fact that if a student is not understanding the text they must re read. However, re reading alone is not the answer. Tovani believes that making connections to the text is very important. The students should use memories, experiences and their background knowledge to help connect to the text. Predictions are also important while reading; one is more aware of what is going on if they are trying to predict what will or will not happen. Tovani mentions to stop and think about what is actually being read. It takes time for students to comprehend everything that is being read and when one stops and thinks about what they are reading it is easier to go back if there is a problem or a misunderstanding. Often students should ask questions while reading the text, this way students are able to look beyond what is given to them. It is important to take notes also while reading, when one is able to write down what is going on in their minds or questions or concerns they have it is easier to then respond to the text. Personally, I really like her "Think Alouds". I definitely think a teacher should model what it is he or she is thinking about as a way to show the students what is going on inside a successful readers mind while reading the text. I like how this can also be changed around so that the student can think aloud and as teachers we are able to monitor the students comprehension. Tovani also uses Double-Entry Diaries which I also think can be very beneficial when helping poor readers become successful readers.
I am reading the book I Read It But I Don't Get It by Chris Tovani. This book will be really helpful when I start teaching. There are so many things that I want to remember from the book! One thing that Tovani does is ends each chapter with "Teaching Points". These points tell me what good readers need to know and do. They tell me what is important for my students to learn and after the 'Teaching Point' she gives examples of how to teach each of them to my students.
Some teaching points from chapters 1-5 that I want to remember are:
- Good readers know that in order to understand what they read, they must do more than pronounce words. They understand that if comprehension is to occur, they must engage in several thinking processes. Good readers are aware of their thinking.
- Good readers don't remember everything they read. They use tools to hold on to their thinking so they can return to it later. Access tools allow readers to use the text to justify and support their thinking.
- Good readers are flexible in their thinking and use different strategies for different types of reading. Good readers percieve reading as something they will do for their entire life, not just to pass a class.
- Good readers know how to idetify their confusion so they can help themselves get unstuck. If they are unable to help themselves, they know they can ask an expert.
- Good readers listen to the voices in their head to help them know when they are understanding and when they are confused. Good readers know that sometimes the voice helps the reader interact with the text and sometimes the voice pulls the reader away from the text. Good readers know how to bring themselves back to their reading by selecting a thinking strategy that will repair meaning.
- Good readers isolate confusion and make a plan to repair meaning. They know that if they continue reading without doing anything to help themselves, their confusion will get worse.
- Good readers don't quit when they become confused. They use fix-up strategies to repair confusion.
- Good readers use fix-up strategies flexibly. When one doesn't work, they try another one.
If I can remember these teaching points they will really help me to communicate good reading habits and suggestions for my students.
- Writers Note: I wrote this entry as a journal entry. I imagined that I was keeping a journal of things that I want to remember when I start teaching. There are so many things that I learn in school that I want to remember when I start teaching that I thought a journal would be a great way to do that! By writing down the teaching points that I loved from Tovani's book I am highlighting the things that I found helpful as well as reminding myself of what I learned from it. It is a great way to reflect on what you read. -Nicole Santa Maria
Are you in a rut? Are your students just not getting it? TrY NeW StRaTeGiEs!!! Cris Tovani knows all in "I Read It, But I Don't Get It"!
* Re read * Making Connections * Background Knowledge * Predictions * Slowing Down * Questioning * Note Taking * Think Alouds
For in depth information and examples, buy the book today, ONLY $ 19.99!!! It'll save your life. A MUST HAVE for this years teachers.
- Why do I have to constantly read, read, read?
- When will what I read connect with what I am going to do with my life?
- When do I get to use all the strategies I am learning?
- Will my students respond to my strategies?
- Where am I going to teach when I get a job?
- Why did I choose teaching when it seems so hard sometimes?
- When do I get my class?
- When can I start?!
Do you read it but just dont get it?
Do you get tired or reading? confused by complex storylines and characters? Are you having trouble finding the purpose?
Come to "I Read It But I Dont Get It" workshop Hosted by Chris Tovani
She will answer all of your dying questions:
-she will show you how to make a connection between the text to other texts, to the world, and to yourself -How to use your personal backgroundknowledge to make sense of the reading -Learn to make predictions and recgonize genres -Notice patterns in text structure -Generate thoughtful questions
Chris Tovani is an expert in teaching questioning our reading!!! Learn how to be itneractive with the text, create motivation, and clarifying information for your students
You will leave with knowing how to create double diary entries, comprehension constructors, and coding sheets!
STOP THE CONFUSION, SEEK HELP TODAY!!!!! We're here to help (Kaylan Triplett)
- Writers Note: I chose to write this self help ad because I feel that this books can help the most frustrated reader by providing some helpful reading tactics. Before reading this book I couldnt pinpoint my reading strategies. I found myself sleeping through or mindleesly reading through many of the chapters. I was becoming increasingly frustrated and angry with myself. I felt that it was my fault. I questioned my ability to read challanging texts. After reading Tovani's book I realized that I just need to fine tune my readingstrategies. This has halped immensely. So, I chose this genre becasue I feel that it best represnted my frustration. Its a class that I would probably be itnersted in attending
- Wanted: Adolescent Readers
We are currently searching for readers who are diligent and have creative ways to fool teachers about reading to enroll in a new course offered just for you. If you can identify with any of these reading problems this course is for you.
- Word Decoders
- Fake Readers
- Fall Asleep
- Forget what you read
- Read too fast
- Lose your place
- Words make no sense
- Or you just look at the words
- We are looking for you!!!!!!
Come watch a struggling reading teacher model his own reading strategies and see for yourself that you are not alone. After just one semester you will be able to remember and retell tales of text that used to be way confusing.
The course offers new and different ways of looking at words and books that will make reading enjoyable and rewarding. You will learn to foresee a difficulty just by looking at a few passages of a book, ask questions about it just by reading the front and back cover and looking a few pictures, and we will teach you to take it slow and just attack chunks of the text.
Reading can sometimes be chore, even for the best readers, we will teach you coping skills to help you read for classes, for jobs, for news, or just for fun. That’s right FUN!
Everybody has had to learn reading strategies to help them be successful readers; our new course will help you also by offering a bunch of different ways to read so you don’t spend a lot of time reading it and not getting it.
- DEAR CRIS -- ADVICE COLUMN
The other day, my son asked me for a pad of sticky notes. He's a little forgetful about deadlines and activities, so I thought he wanted to stick reminder notes on the computer, or on his bathroom mirror, or somewhere else he often frequents. But, that wasn't his intention.
What he did use them for was notes in his textbook. I'm confused about what he's doing, and as he's a teenager, he doesn't tell me much. I get typically one word answers. Example: "What are you using those sticky notes for?," I ask. "Notes," he says. I ask: "What do you write on them?" He replies, "Stuff." So, I am hoping you can help enlighten me.
Mother of One Word Answerer
There's no need to worry... your son is actually employing a strategy that will help him remember what he reads. It is called "marking" the text, or "coding" the text. Most likely he is using a school textbook and that is why he uses sticky notes and not highlighting, although that is another method of coding the text.
This is a strategy to help students focus on their reading. Whenever the students come to a place in the text that triggers a thought, they write it down. For instance, BK is used for background knowledge, ? for a question and I for a conclusion that he or she draws. The notes written are placed in the specific place in the text. Writing these comments keeps students focused and helps them to remember what they read.
And, who knows, maybe he'll start writing sticky notes reminding himself about other things as well. A mother can hope!
My grand-daughter is reading poetry in her English class and having trouble relating to it. I'm sorry to hear that is the case, because the poetry is classic, but in a way I do understand, as it is the same poetry I read in my own high school class - 50 years ago!
For instance, she is reading Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken" and is confused by the syntax. It's hard for her to understand the content when everything in the poem seems so foreign to her. What strategy might she use to help?
The difficulties your grand-daughter is facing are not isolated ones. Many students have trouble relating to unknown texts. At first, a new text may not seem to offer many connections for students to adhere to. However, I have some techniques that just might help her.
What I'd like to suggest is that she use her own personal knowledge and experiences to draw on, in order to draw parallels. Let's try an example with one stanza of the poem she's now reading:
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, (This reminds me of Autumn, when the leaves of trees turn colors, from green to yellow, red and orange) And sorry I could not travel both (I remember one summer: My best friend invited me to travel in a motor home with her family to Oregon at the same time that my mom and dad had rented a house at the lake. I really wished I could do both.) And be one traveler, long I stood (I, too, paused for a long time, trying to figure out a way to do both. Sadly, it was impossible.) And looked down one as far as I could To where it bent in the undergrowth.
The comments in parentheses are mine. What I've done - and what your grand-daughter can do - is notate comments about her own life that relate to sections of the poem. By stopping and finding similarities, she will be more able to relate to the poem and decipher meaning from it. These are text-to-self connections, and can help make a poem that was written 91 years ago much more meaningful!
Sherry: I chose an advice column because I thought it would be an ideal way to share Tovani's strategies in real world examples. Many of her strategies are shared in an anecdotal manner, and I thought it lent itself well to an advice column. I also thought it would help solidify the information for me, if I was able to invent a situation and explain how a specific strategy worked and would apply.
Dialogue: between little Kay and her teacher, Ms. Spears. Kay: Ms. Spears, Ms. Spears! I don’t want to read this book anymore, can I do a word search instead? Ms. S.: Why don’t you want to read the book anymore Kay? Would you like to choose a different book to read? K: No, thank you. I just don’t like to read. Ms. S.: well maybe you just need a little help reading the book so that you can understand it better. Why don’t we read it together. K: ok, I guess I can do that. Ms. S.: Why do you start reading and then I will help you with the parts you don’t understand. ~Kay starts to read but she reads so fast that she skips over words and sometimes even whole sentences. Ms. S.: ok good job Kay. Now let’s read this page over together, but this time lets do it really slow. ~They read the page together and this time Kay reads all of it. Ms. S: Good. Now let’s stop for a minute and talk about what we have read so far. ~They discuss what they have read so far, but little Kay doesn’t seem to like the text still. K: I think that I just don’t understand why the characters do the things that they do in the story. Ms. S.: well, why don’t you try and see if you have done anything in your life that would be like what the characters have going on in their lives. ~Kay thinks for a minute. K: Oh, now I see what you’re saying. I think that I might give this book another chance. Thanks for helping me Ms. Spears. Ms. S: You’re welcome Kay. Just remember, if you get stuck again, take your time reading the page and try to see if you can connect the story to your own life.
I choose to write a dialogue between a teacher and her student who was having a hard time reading a book. I think that it was realistic because many students can read but they don’t always understand what they have just read, and this goes directly with what the book is talking about. The main points that I wanted to include in the story is that the student can read, but she reads way too fast to comprehend the material. The teacher helps her by showing her techniques that can improve her reading and memory of the material read.