The Three Developmental Reading Skill Areas
Instructional strategies focus on developing three skill areas: vocabulary, comprehension, and reading rate/fluency. Other program goals include enhancement of study skills, dictionary skills, and promotion of reading for enjoyment. Assignments include reading selected high-interest, low-vocabulary novels in an attempt to increase student enjoyment of reading. Program evaluations by students indicate that most students do enjoy reading the novels.
VOCABULARY DEVELOPMENT: The program utilizes the WISEsoft Reading Intervention Computer Program. The number of computer work stations precludes all students having access during class; therefore, instructors have developed supplementary materials to provide students with practice using the vocabulary words of the WISEsoft computer program. MSU Strategic Reading instructors have authored multiple sets of context sentences and vocabulary tests (on 11 different vocabulary grade levels) to aid in students’ understanding of the WISEsoft vocabulary. The faculty-developed vocabulary tests are used in assessing student progress.
COMPREHENSION SKILLS: Instructors utilize a textbook authored by Brenda Smith and Lee Ann Morris titled Bridging the Gap to develop students' comprehension strategies. Our new 10th addition was custom made for Morehead State University. This textbook provides high-interest reading materials and timely articles and stories that promote discussion to enhance students’ cognitive skills and reading comprehension. The students also use “My Reading Lab” which is a supplemental program included with the purchase of the textbook. Continuation of skill work is the majority of emphasis in this program.
READING RATE/FLUENCY: The program utilizes Jamestown Timed Readings workbooks (10 reading levels are available, and each student is assigned a book level based on that student’s pretest vocabulary score). Instructors have determined, through observation and examination of students’ work, that this part of the program enhances students’ ability to concentrate as they read as it increases their reading rate. Student evaluations of the program reflect that the timed readings and pacing exercises help them to focus as they read. Increasing their reading rate eliminates the need to re-read material and enables students to become more effective readers.