Showing posts from April, 2016

The Best of Frank Serafini - Thoughts on Lessons in Comprehension

There is no single method of reading. T.S. Eliot once said that there was no method except to be very intelligent. I should prefer to say that, for most of us with middling gifts in the way of pure intelligence, serious attention to the craft of reading can take us quite far. Reading is the route to intelligence, not the goal of it. It is proper attention to the craft of reading that will make the reader crafty.                                                                         Robert Scholes, The Crafty Reader It seems that everyone is concerned with the nature of the reading instructional experiences we offer our students, the scientific foundations upon which we base these experiences, how these instructional experiences will help readers develop their literate abilities and how we plan to measure achievement and growth in reading proficiency. Given the pressures of adopting particular commercial reading programs by federal and state legislation, it has become appa

Best of Frank Serafini: Lesson In Comprehension- What is Explicit Instruction?

Explicitness in Comprehension Instruction It’s hard to find the words “reading instruction” in commercial programs and government sponsored documents without finding an adjective like “explicit, direct, sequential or systematic” attached to it. But what does this really mean? Does it assume that teachers haven’t been teaching, or haven’t been teaching correctly? Does it mean that the word “instruction” has been expanded to mean too many things and we have to be more specific in our use of the word? Or does it allude to the idea that comprehension instruction must be controlled through mandated commercial programs in order to be effective? Particular literacy educators have been advocating explicit, systematic instruction in decoding and comprehension skills for many years. Some envision explicit instruction as a series of required instructional steps or procedures designed to guarantee that students understand explicitly what is expected of them and what is being taught. Others are con