The Comprehension Strategies Box

July 20, 2021 No Comments

This post is a collaboration with Prim Ed Publishing.

Hi everyone,

In this post I am reviewing one of the newest resources from Prim Ed Publishing- the Comprehension Strategies Box. I received this a few months ago now but the review has taken a while as there is a lot to the product. I have included photos for reference too.

As a teacher, English is one of my favourite subjects to teach but I’ll be the first to admit it’s quite daunting due to the sheer size of the English curriculum. Sometimes it’s just hard to know where to begin. Teaching comprehension skills is huge, it’s one of the core aspects of our curriculum and of teaching in any subject area. It’s important to have a solid grasp and understanding of exactly how to approach teaching comprehension skills, while ensuring we don’t overthink it and get too bogged down in it at the same time.

The Comprehension Strategies Box is similar in presentation to other Box resources from Prim Ed, durable , colourful and visually pleasing for young children. It’s more than just aesthetics however. The Comprehension Box is an excellent tool to have in a primary school. They retail at just over €200 so they are quite an investment but if you are working on this area or you feel your school needs some support then they are definitely worth researching. You can get a free sample from the Prim Ed website.

This description below is from the Prim Ed website:

The Comprehension Strategies Box is a set of six boxes suitable for children aged 5-11+. Each box contains a set of full-colour, differentiated literacy cards designed to support the teaching and learning of nine different comprehension strategies. These well-researched and proven strategies—predicting, visualising, making connections, questioning, clarifying, summarising, determining importance, inferring and synthesising—are compiled to help teachers unlock their pupils’ reading abilities. 

The Comprehension Strategies Box caters for all pupils while learning the same strategies, with three differentiated reading levels by suggested Lexile® ranges for each strategy, and a placement test provided to ascertain pupils’ starting point.

Features:
  • Six copies of each text card allows focused group work, while independent groups/stations are catered for with activity sheets specific to each text.
  • Original texts across the cards and Teacher Guide, allowing pupils to experience a variety of fiction and non-fiction text types.
  • Extensive support through a comprehensive Teacher Guide and an additional Activity Book with worksheets for all texts on the cards.

After spending more time than I’d like to admit going through this resource, it definitely passed my user test, which is basically how often would I use this resource in my classroom. If I will use it twice a week every week then to me it’s worth investing in. If I don’t then it’s not worth it. I received Comprehension Box One which is for first and second class. I love how original the stories are- they are short and engaging and would hold the child’s interest.
My favourite aspect of the resource is probably the teacher book, it breaks everything down step by step for anyone who is unsure of how to approach teaching comprehension. It gives a placement test too which shows at which level each child should start at which allows for seamless differentiation. There’s loads of excellent assessment templates too. The teacher guidebook goes through each activity and strategy and breaks down how to teach it step by step. So that’s by far the most valuable aspect of the resource for me. The activity book for the children then contains all the activities and worksheets to go with the cards.

https://www.prim-ed.ie/series/the-comprehension-strategies-box/

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Valerie King

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