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5 Brilliant Ways to Improve Students Reading Levels

In an ever-changing, complex society based on communication, students must learn how to read. Reading affluently will not only be a valuable skill throughout one’s school experience and academic training but will also prove helpful to students as they travel, apply for career positions, and develop an understanding of local and national politics and events.

Reading, however, does not come naturally to all students. While some students possess a natural talent for reading and writing, others may struggle to read or keep up with course work. To help promote growth for such students and to help students of all ages and skill levels improve their reading levels, teachers can enforce the following strategies:

Encourage students to read every day

As teachers already know, repeated, deliberate action helps students learn and remember concepts. When students are learning how to read or are seeking to improve their literacy levels, repetition is crucial. Continued, clockwork practice will keep ideas and words fresh on the minds of the students, and they will be able to practice their skills each day.

Teachers should either provide time during the school day for students to read individually or should assign reading logs to students so they can track how much the student is reading at home. Teachers and parents can work together to make reading fun and exciting, encouraging children to read in their free time, before school, during car rides, before bed, or while waiting at a bus station. Teachers can also introduce students to books they will enjoy reading to get them excited about learning outside of school. As parents and teachers show students appropriate times where they may read, students will become passionate about literacy and will soon make it into a daily habit (Scholastic).

Assign spelling and vocabulary tests

Most students do not enjoy taking tests, but spelling or vocabulary tests can be crucial and play an essential role in expanding a student’s literacy levels. Spelling and vocabulary words will help students become more familiar with increasingly complex terms and will help them understand advanced texts. After studying the assigned terms for their upcoming test, students will be able to phonetically sound them out, spell them correctly, and recognize their significance in books or class texts.

Teachers can administer spelling and vocabulary by assigning selected words to students. Teachers can assign different terms based on the levels and needs of each student. It is helpful when teachers allow students to study and practice spelling or defining their words for about one week before testing their students’ knowledge. Teachers can ask students to write down the word in the correct spelling or ask for a specific definition as part of their comprehensive tests. As they do so, students will learn basic oratory and written rules for their language of study. They will be able to identify similar words, patterns, and meanings as they continue to read and experience growth.

Assign partner-based reading time

While it is crucial for students to fluently read on their own, teachers find it useful to pair students with a partner for their reading study. Students can learn from each other, use problem-solving skills to unriddle complicated or advanced words, and can get advice or personal help from a friend their age, a teacher, or a parent at home. Teachers can assign practical portions of a textbook, novel, magazine, or newspaper to their students. They can instigate in-class discussion and divide students into partnerships or can assign their students to read with a parent as homework. Teachers can also learn with students during class, always alternating between one partner and the other. Students can fill out comprehensive worksheets that ask easy questions about the text or have a discussion about what they learned from the reading.

Read out-loud to students

Parents, guardians, or teachers are often encouraged to read out loud to their students (Schwartz). While children cannot simply learn to read by listening, they can improve their reading scores when listening to an adult read aloud. When children listen to a parent or teacher read aloud, they may start discussions or ask questions about specific words, phrases, or plot points in the story. Students will be able to directly counsel with an educated adult who can explain complex sounds, terms, and literary devices to them. As children discuss these concepts, words, and literary ideas with an adult, they will recognize those patterns and words in other texts and be better able to comprehend them (Schwartz).

Reading aloud to children does not require any particular time, place, or book. Studies show that the simple association between parent-child interaction and reading fosters feelings of fondness and love for reading among children (Schwartz). Teachers can encourage parents to read out loud or with their children and can set apart class time to read entertaining books or stories aloud to their entire class. This will prove to be an engaging, relaxing activity for students that promotes creativity, literary comprehension, and academic growth.

Set goals with students

Learning to read is a life-long, complicated process. To encourage students along their literary journey and promote extended personal growth, teachers should converse with students and help them set practical goals for literary improvement and reading ability. While teachers can provide direction and help students phrase their goals, the central objective should, eventually, be determined by the student (Wabisabi). Some easy examples of potential goals include the following:
  • Get 100% on a spelling test
  • Learn the definitions of five new words
  • Individually read a short novel before the end of the school year
  • Memorize the alphabet
  • Read out-loud in class
Helpful goals are personal and should be between student, parent, and teacher. It is proven that “[Students] are likely to focus more of their attention on the parts of the text that are most closely tied to their reading goals,” so students will pay more attention to the assigned texts and will be able to practice, quickly apply, and expand upon their literary skills in an organized manner (Wabisabi).

As teachers helpfully participate in proven techniques and encourage students to read, assign spelling/vocabulary tests, encourage students to read with a partner, read aloud, and set goals with their pupils, they will see substantial academic improvement and growth in their classes. This organized course of action will help teachers be confident in their students as they quickly progress toward a brighter future.

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