July 17, 2005

Reluctant Readers

struggling readers lack confidence, and care most about keeping some form of respect with their peers.
To improve social and emotional confidence in students who struggle Beers suggests: keeping expectations high and providing necessary scaffolding; creating classrooms that encourage risk, participation. and strong interaction through respect (know names, celebrate diversity, don't tolerate put-downs); encouraging responses that are aesthetic rather than simply efferent (information-seeking); recognizing stages of literary appreciation and choosing appropriate literature (at different stages, kids value different things); giving students "smart words" to use for discussion (past "it was boring" or "I liked it"); and providing time for sustained silent reading. Finally, Beers describes aliteracy as "not only an academic problem but a societal concern." She describes four types of aliterates, all challenging to motivate: dormant, uncommitted, unmotivated and unskilled readers. It requires tenacity and patience to connect these readers to texts, and to "build the confidence they need to fully enter into the community of readers."

Posted by wiseh005 at 2:31 PM