Reading Strategies for ESL Reinforcement by Lucille Lever
The Importance of Rereading to Improve Vocabulary and Comprehension - Reading a passage once is not enough for true comprehension and language development, in the English as a Second Language classroom.
When students complete their first reading of a passage or essay, this should not mean the end of the work, but rather the starting point for rereading, in order to understand the meaning, and absorb new vocabulary and grammar structures. Rereading acts as a mechanism for the brain to process information, photograph the spelling of new words, and put together old and new language concepts. As students often read aloud in the classroom, the practice of rereading has a number of advantages. It helps students - pronounce better and trains the readers to articulate more fluently when reading aloud - guides the students to work through a passage - helps students find their own reading strategies that work -teaches learners to skim and scan - illustrates comprehension strategies - encourages students to feel more confident
Repetition as a Means of Learning Learning by heart has become antiquated, yet many students learn from repetition. Rereading adds this option by giving the task of going over the texts for a second or third time for better absorption of new material, in the hope that the new information becomes part of the learners’ knowledge. Tapes, CDs , DVDs for Listening Practice The rereading can also be done via listening to recorded material. Students do not have to do the reading by themselves, but can listen to prerecorded texts while reading silently. This method has its own advantages; hearing another reader will also fortify the new vocabulary and grammar. A professional voice on a CD may also expose the student to different accents, fluency and speed. Hearing and understanding the text read by an English speaker gives the learners the encouragement that they understand real English. Listening to a text also serves as a model for students to emulate so that on a third reading, students may be able to read aloud with positive results in fluency, emulation and expression. Reading Aloud Reading aloud doesn’t reflect the true comprehension of students, but merely shows the skill of seeing, deciphering and producing sounds. The problem for teachers, however, is that one of the ways to check that students can read is to have them read aloud. Because of the gap that exists between real comprehension and the reading aloud of the text (even if it sounds very fluent), it is essential to have student s read silently to ensure that they have understood the new information. To enable comprehension, give the students an appropriate amount of time to ask questions, refer to dictionaries, and write responses to the questions about the text. Even if the teacher also reads a passage to the students, if there is not a rereading task that the students undertake alone, it will not ensure that they have understood, formulated answers or internalized anything. Rushing through a text once is a waste of time and teachers should not assume that the material is understood, and no longer necessary for working on. It is also a pity to waste well formulated ideas that were prepared by authors for learners. Teachers should take advantage of a text, using it, kneading it, working it, until it is well formed and ultimately consumed by the student. Developing Reading Confidence Essential in the process of ESL, is the progress that students should feel they are making as they undertake more difficult texts. They should feel improvement, increased knowledge, and confidence to pick up a complex reading passage, work through it slowly, reread it a number of times, and have better understanding on completion of the task.