What is Reading Comprehension, and How Do We Assess It?

Reading comprehension is a hard concept to define, and an even harder one to assess. Though when asked, most people will say something on the order of “It means what you understand,” that’s really just substituting one undefined word for another. How can we get to the heart of the matter? According to Webster’s Collegiate … Continue reading “What is Reading Comprehension, and How Do We Assess It?”


Assessing Comprehension in the Real World

Our world has transitioned from a pen-and-paper to a multimedia experience. Instead of getting our information strictly from encyclopedias and books catalogued on note cards in the public library, we now look to the internet, social media, texts, videos, and online courses for content. What this means for reading is that we do not just … Continue reading “Assessing Comprehension in the Real World”


The Value of Reading to Kids at an Early Age

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents begin reading to their children as soon as they are born. While this may seem a little early to some, there is an increasing body of evidence that shows that kids who have early and regular exposure to books and stories – sometimes called “bookishness” – have … Continue reading “The Value of Reading to Kids at an Early Age”


The Thirst for Knowledge and the Critical Need for Critical Thinking

Critical thinking is an important strategy for today’s educational and job-related environments. It is important, therefore, that teachers and administrators understand the nature of critical thinking and embrace its many parts, all of which are necessary for true learning to occur. The first part of critical thinking, and one which has fallen by the wayside … Continue reading “The Thirst for Knowledge and the Critical Need for Critical Thinking”


Illiteracy in America – Part 2

In part 1 of this blog topic, we talked about the tremendous problem of adult illiteracy in this country, looked at the staggering numbers, and contemplated the possible correlations with varying social conditions. Now, though, we need to answer the questions those figures raised – what can we do to help those who are illiterate, … Continue reading “Illiteracy in America – Part 2”


Illiteracy in America – Part 1

Functional illiteracy is defined by the non-profit Literacy Volunteers of America as “the inability of an individual to use reading, writing, and computational skills in everyday life.” Think that’s not a problem in as developed a country as America? Well, you’re wrong. It’s a big one – a really big one. The National Center for … Continue reading “Illiteracy in America – Part 1”


Ways to Help Struggling Readers

Most of the fundamental reading skills are taught to students between grades 1 and 3. It is essential that the students grasp the concepts and develop strong skills at that time, as beyond grade 3, students don’t learn to read but, instead, read to learn. For students who struggle with reading, teachers find that they … Continue reading “Ways to Help Struggling Readers”


Using Graphic Novels and Comics for Reading Comprehension

When you think of improving students’ reading comprehension skills, do you ever consider graphic novels and comics as handy instruction aids? If not, you should. The common cliché is that “a picture is worth a thousand words,” but it’s absolutely true that students who are having difficulty comprehending a rigorous text may benefit from visual … Continue reading “Using Graphic Novels and Comics for Reading Comprehension”


Understanding Dyslexia – Part 3

[Editor’s note: This is Part 3 of a four-part series on dyslexia. Links to the other parts are included in the blog.] Last week, in Part 2  of this series, we discussed how dyslexia is diagnosed and the number of different possible interventions that exist within the school system to help dyslexic students. Today, we’re … Continue reading “Understanding Dyslexia – Part 3”


Understanding Dyslexia – Part 2

[Editor’s note: This is Part 2 of a four-part series on dyslexia. Links to the other parts are included in the blog.] In Part 1 of our discussion on dyslexia, we talked a little bit about the disorder and the difficulties dyslexics encounter when reading, spelling, and even verbalizing. Now we’re going to look at … Continue reading “Understanding Dyslexia – Part 2”