Reading Comprehensions- Second Edition

February 9, 2023

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I created my first set of reading comprehensions in September/October. I was finding English hard to teach at the time because the reading scheme we use was quite advanced for the early days of first class. So I created my own resources instead, for phonics and comprehension. The children are more able now for the reading scheme as we are half way through first class, and they have a lot more confidence. I still however use my reading comprehensions every day except for Friday! I chose to write a variety of fiction and non-fiction pieces. The fictional stories are ones I make up for my own children every night as they always prefer ‘stories from my head’ to actual books! The non fiction texts are based on a variety of topics, ranging from snakes, to sloths, and the rainforest to Irish woodland creatures. There is a lot about Ireland in the second set of comprehensions, including a very simple introduction to rivers of Ireland, native Irish animals, trees, the zoo and President Michael D Higgins.  I also like to include a variety of writing genres in the texts. Last week for example the comprehension was a letter a class wrote to their principal thanking him for everything in the school etc. When we finished answering the questions on the text we then wrote our own letters to our own principal and delivered them to his office. So I try to tie in the comprehensions with our genres of writing when I can. We also had a procedural writing piece last week for our comprehension, which was a nice way to revise the procedural writing we did in term one. We then made our own cookies on the Friday of that week in science. I try to link and integrate as much as I can. Often the English lesson ends up being either a history or geography lesson too!

Sometimes we do a short directed drawing from youtube too, for example when we read about the panda, we found a directed drawing video on youtube and drew the panda too. So then it links in with art too!

Each of the two comprehension resources have fifty texts each. It really provides great structure to our day, the children know what they are to do as soon as they come in, and they like guessing what the story will be about each day. I also tie it in with whatever blend we are doing in phonics too or whatever we are working on. Last week they were busy looking for Magic E’s in the text.

I created the comprehensions with first class in mind, but I know they are being used by a variety of classes and in a variety of settings. The second set of comprehensions in particular would be suitable for second class too. A lot of teachers who have downloaded the resource use it in SET with all different age groups.  One teacher told me she uses it with Ukrainian children, another uses it in an autism class, and a speech therapist told me she uses it in her sessions with a child too.  # The feedback so far has been very positive, and I am just happy that teachers find it as useful and versatile a resource as I do.

The teaching of reading needs to include a range of comprehension strategies, i.e. mental processes the reader uses to make sense of the text they are engaging with. Comprehension skills include creating images, skimming, scanning and self- questioning. It then moves on to making connections, comparing, inferring and predicting, right up to the higher order skills of synthesising, determining importance, summarising and self-questioning.

Reading Comprehension Strategies :

  • Using prior knowledge
  • Predicting
  • Identifying the main idea
  • Making inferences
  • Visualising
  • Story maps
  • Retelling

Table of Contents:

  1. Tom Crean
  1. The Panda
  2. Henry Ford
  3. Bees
  4. Neil Armstrong
  5. Rivers of Ireland
  6. Leonardo De Vinci
  7. Michael D Higgins
  8. Snakes
  9. The Amazon rainforest
  10. The Sloth
  11. Baking Cookies
  12. A Letter to Our Principal
  13. A Report on the Turtle
  14. Australia
  15. The Holiday
  16. Sarah’s First Day
  17. Mark’s Big Show
  18. The Magic Tree
  19. Paddy the Pixie Makes Mischief
  20. The Dolphin
  21. Irish Wildlife
  22. The Fox
  23. The School Tour
  24. The Magical Unicorn
  25. Valentine’s Day
  26. The Bird Who Couldn’t Fly
  27. The Elephant’s Trunk
  28. History of the GAA
  29. Katie Taylor
  30. The Little Red Fire Engine to the Rescue!
  31. Space
  32. The Life Cycle of the Frog
  33. Walt Disney
  34. Christopher Columbus
  35. The Runaway Goat
  36. School Long Ago
  37. St Patrick’s Day
  38. The Cheetah
  39. Dublin Zoo
  40. How to Take Care of a Pet
  41. Trees of Ireland
  42. Billy Learns to Swim
  43. Goldilocks and the Fox Family
  44. Saint Brendan
  45. The Octopus
  46. Spring
  47. Lego
  48. Ireland
  49. Minecraft

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