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Informal Reading Inventories (IRIs)
University professors, reading specialist, and classroom teachers require some helpful documented summaries of professional-linked information appropriate to their tasks. Informal Reading Inventories (IRIS) is amongst such useful publications (International Reading Association, 2008).
An IRI is diagnostic assessment developed to evaluate various aspects of students’ reading outcome. Normally, IRIs comprise of graded wordlists and passages consisting of preprimary, middle and secondary school levels (Paris & Carpenter, 2003). This involves oral follow-up questions testing comprehension and remembrance after a student has read each level comprehension.
Teachers or other educational specialist, use word identification and comprehension scores to determine student’s reading level for those who orally read the passages, plus more elements taken into account, such as emotional situations, fluency, prior knowledge, among others (International Reading Association, 2008).
To support young students in improving literacy, advanced literature, including expository and descriptive works, constitute the resources employed in literature based guidelines. Such instructions afford authentic learning events and performances through teaching and fostering literacy.
Literature-based guidelines focus on the use of advanced literary publications as the major instructional tools used to promote literacy development. A guiding conception of this viewpoint is the fact that literacy achievement is favored by a book-rich environment within which there is enough useful meaning and communication is socially built.
Literary materials in this setting include picture books, predictable books, big books, folk tales, contemporary realistic fiction, historical fiction, myths, fables, biographies, and nonfiction informational books (Gambrell, Morrow & Pennington, 2002).
Although various theoretical perspectives have been put forward to support literature-based reading guidelines, reader response theory is probably the most relevant. This theory explains the way readers understand literature.
Theorist in this field hypothesize that literature is not a thing to be analyzed, neither can any literary piece have one correct elucidation, instead the in-text meaning is developed through reader’s subjective understanding of their experiences during their reading.
Therefore, meaning is a two-way development that embeds in the transaction that ensues linking the reader to the text, in which the reader builds a personal imagination stimulated by the text. The reader relies on the previous experiences to choose images and feelings that will facilitate his or her shaping of the text, and still the text tunes the reader through new experiences.
Reading skills versus memory
Success in school mainly relies on reading and on recalling the things one reads. Students who experience challenges regarding the speed and accuracy with which they read texts are therefore at a disadvantage.
It is widely accepted that word decoding problems produce unsatisfactory outcomes with respect of reading comprehension examination, even though the extent of the shortfall is prominent on certain comprehensive examination models compared to others. Nevertheless, the feature of comprehension that is affected is uncertain (Millar & Keenan, 2009).
Research study on the causes of comprehension problems has pitched recently, although the research rule out students with word decoding discrepancies and instead compares the disparities between good and poor comprehenders devoid of decoding deficit.
The researchers argue that it is worth consideration in comprehension research to be understanding of the challenges that poor decoders face in comprehension, in order to have the insight into possibility of solution.
An obvious approach to developing comprehension in children with decoding impairment involves improving their word decoding proficiency. However, other possibilities might arise through knowledge of how their comprehension of a passage differs from that of distinctive readers.
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Certain questions can arise with respect to such researches. For instance, can they recall less since they are just getting the key points, while missing the particulars? Similarly, are they recalling particulars except when performing inadequately on abstracting the main themes? In addition, are they depicting deficiency in all modes of information?
A reader’s visualization of the text is a product of the in-text information coupled with the reader’s experience. Thoughts become related to visualization either based on the in-text information or the reader’s previous experience facilitates the connection.
The “knowledge compensation hypothesis” claims that problems with application of text information to determine the connection can be equalize with the previous experience to enable the formation of such connections (Miller & Keenan, 2009).
Inference upon reading
Qualitative inference refers to the impression formed by the reader of information and usually involves the reader arriving at a conclusion depending on an idea or ideas. With respect to social psychology this is termed as stereotypes or attitudes. Stereotypes are involved in various roles, including providing the means to simplify the demands on the reader as well as can be attributed to environmental factors.
Stereotyping applies to social grouping and concerns grouping based on speech and dialect. Attitudes, on the other hand, are explained as decisions in a cognitive framework or a calculating reaction towards a topic or event (Taghehchian & Miles-Pittman, 2010).
Persons make inferences depending on the information they decode. One of the ways they decode information is via correspondence. Communication impacts on how people view the world. Within the communication process, an individual develops inferences determined by what they read or hear.
Such inference is developed at a young age and begins with listening to trace provided in words in form of perceived stories and are inferred from what people hear (Taghehchian & Miles-Pittman, 2010).
Attitude about reading are thought to develop as a factor of repeated success or failure with respect of the reading practice. Students with desirable reading abilities typically have optimistic attitudes towards the habit, while those with dismal reading ability must surmount negative attitudes towards the habit, so as to develop their reading skills.
The teacher’s viewpoint of students’ attitude for reading may not necessarily correspond with the attitudes borne of his/her students, and could mainly depends on the reading success. Because teachers are pressurized to concentrate on basic abilities, or harbor the notion that enhancing reading efficiency will boost students’ attitudes, inadequate time is devoted to improving desirable attitudes towards reading in schools.
When individuals read a narrative piece of work, they appreciate the characters and events within the text. Noteworthy, they as well understand the subject of the text that brings out the general meaning of the narrative. The subject of the narrative is the moral that readers may connect with their lives (Zhang & Hoosain, 2005).
A theme can be approached from three different aspects, including:
- the subject of a narrative translates to an overall exclamation statement including an adage,
- the subject of narrative work may be expressed in the form of a content word concerning the theme of the text,
- the subject of narrative story may involve a thematic abstract unit (TAU), which signifies the thematic framework of an event while serving various events in memory decoding (Zhang & Hoosain 2005).
Gambrell, L.B., Morrow, L.M., & Pennington, C. (2002, February). Early childhood and elementary literature-based instruction: Current perspectives and special issues. Reading Online, 5(6). Web.
International Reading Association. (2008). International reading association (2008). A Critical Analysis of Eight Informal Reading Inventories. Washington DC. Web.
Miller, A. C. & Keenan, J. M. (2009). How Word Reading Skill Impacts Text Memory: The Centrality Deficit and How Domain Knowledge Can Compensate. Rockville Pike, Bethesda: National Center for Biotechnology Information.
Paris, S.G., & Carpenter, R.D. (2003). FAQs about IRIs. The Reading Teacher, 56(6), 578-580.
Taghehchian, R., & Miles-Pittman, T. (2010). Inference on reading: The effects of Word Choice and gender on qualitative inference during reading. San Jose state university. Web.
Zhang, H. & Hoosain, R. (2005). Activation of themes during narrative reading. Discourse processes, 40(1), 57-82. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.