Preventing the Development of Struggling Readers: Comprehension Instruction in the Science Classroom

  • Evan Ortlieb Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi
  • Megan Renee Norris Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi
Keywords: comprehension, think-aloud, prevention, science, literacy, kindergarten

Abstract

Comprehension of text is developmental in that it begins with a child’s ability to listen and make sense of language. Though listening comprehension is often the predecessor towards reading comprehension; some children maintain difficulties in listening comprehension throughout schooling and into adulthood.  Scaffolding plays an important part of a student’s learning, as teachers can gradually extend a student’s ability to understand texts of increasing difficulty and abstract content.  The direct instruction of comprehension strategies such as the think-aloud facilitate the development of listening and reading comprehension simultaneously.  This quasi-experimental study investigated the effectiveness of using a think-aloud strategy to improve students’ reading comprehension in science within a kindergarten classroom.  Results depict that using think-alouds as a during-reading activity significantly increases a student’s comprehension in science class as compared to the control group.  Findings provide relevant information about employing think-alouds as an instructional tool for teachers in the primary grade levels.