Reading Comprehension - Reading to Learn


Sometimes a student is able to read, but is not able to understand what he is reading. Without comprehension skills, the act of reading is frustrating. The sentences just don’t make sense and learning the material through reading doesn’t happen.  

It’s not unusual for a student to complete the primary grades without having developed solid comprehension skills.  In the upper grades, when more independent learning through reading is assigned, this lack of skills becomes apparent as the student falls behind in class.  Not only is the student lacking the necessary skills, but also he may have little or no background knowledge of the new topics to help him relate to the material, to become interested in and focus upon what he is reading.    

Reading comprehension is necessary for the effective study of all subjects as well as for the effective following of a story for enjoyment.  In addition to the knowledge and the pleasure received through reading, vocabulary is expanded, and proper spelling is reinforced with the printed word seen repeatedly.  The ability to communicate grows and writing skills are enhanced as well.       

Reading fluency is needed so that the student can read to the end of the sentence while still remembering the beginning and the middle of it.  With practice, fluency develops so that the student can read paragraphs, then pages and chapters, while retaining awareness of what he is reading.  Using comprehension skills, the awareness becomes understanding as the student interprets the meanings of the words and the meanings of the sentences he is reading, connecting it all within the context of a paragraph or a story.  
Materials to be read should be on an appropriate level for the reader, advancing as his skills advance.  Familiarity with the subject of the material and with its related vocabulary will help the student.  An established connection with the subject allows the student to build on prior knowledge and the new concepts can be grasped more readily. 

The student must become an alert and active reader, monitoring his attention so that he concentrates on understanding what is being read as well as the reading of it.  In addition, he should reread a paragraph if he hasn’t understood it the first time, rereading the prior paragraph to see if he has missed an idea. The meanings of new vocabulary words should be learned when they appear in the reading.  To foster retention, the student should reflect on what he read, drawing upon any background knowledge of the topic.  He should then summarize the material in his own words and visualize what is being described, making a sketch, a chart or a map if appropriate.  Summary note making is especially beneficial for study as it provides the student with notes to follow for review. 

At Lear Educational Center we provide personalized, one-to-one tutoring in Reading, Comprehension, Spelling and Language Arts on all levels, enabling students to best understand and retain what they read today and to meet the classroom challenges of tomorrow.  Remediation recommendations from the student’s classroom teachers are addressed as well as the student’s learning differences. Lear Educational Center uses the highly acclaimed Wilson Reading System® to maximize the student's potential to read well. The Wilson Reading System® is appropriate for students of all ages, especially those with learning differences. 


Lear Educational Center - providing tutoring services to students from Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton and the Greater Lehigh Valley since 2000