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Comprehension Lesson Plan

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Submitted By atlloislane
Words 1395
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Lesson Plan: Comprehension
EDRD 6600

Research-Based Rationale

For my final lesson plan, I choose to focus on Comprehension. The National Reading Panel’s report has identified Comprehension as one of the five essential components of effective reading instruction. Comprehension is an active process that enables the learner to understand the words being read, and is the actual reason for reading! Comprehension requires purposeful and thoughtful interaction with text, and improves through explicit teaching of specific cognitive strategies. More specifically, the rationale for explicitly teaching comprehension skills is that comprehension can be improved by teaching students to reason strategically when they encounter barriers to understanding what they are reading (National Reading Panel, 2000). The NRP reviewed over four hundred studies on text comprehension and found that there are seven instructional strategies that appear to have a solid scientific basis for students to increase comprehension. The first strategy is Comprehension Monitoring which involves students reading text with an aggressive awareness of when they do and don’t understand something. The second strategy is Cooperative Learning, which involves students working on clearly defined reading tasks in small groups or as partners. The third strategy is the Use of Graphic Organizers or Story Maps. This helps display concepts and interrelationships among concepts in text through the use of diagrams. The fourth strategy is Question Answering, which involves students answering questions posed by the teacher, and includes immediate teacher feedback. The fifth strategy is to Generate Questions. This involves teaching students to ask their own questions prior to reading by scanning the text and then having students read the text to answer their questions. The sixth strategy is Recognizing Story Starters, which refers to students being taught organization and story structure as a means of helping them to recall story content in effort to answer questions about what they have just read. The final strategy is Summarizing, which refers to connecting important ideas and concepts in a text. Summarizing requires that students determine what’s important, and then put that information in their own words (NRP, 2000). In conclusion research on teaching reading comprehension strategies has grown considerably over the last twenty years. On a whole, new findings suggest that teaching a combination of reading comprehension techniques is most effective. When students use these techniques appropriately, they assist in recall, question answering, question generation, and summarization of texts. When used in combination, these techniques can improve results in standardized comprehension tests, and performance in specific academic areas such as social studies and science (Mercer & Mercer, 2005).

Comprehension Lesson Plan

Overview/Theory to Practice
The following lesson plan utilizes systematic and explicit instruction to teach comprehension strategies, provide opportunities for in-depth discussions, and encourage authentic reading and writing activities.
Theory to Practice
Application: Teachers should explicitly teach and model strategies for comprehension. • Initially have students read easy text to practice a new comprehension strategy. • Create with students a wall chart defining each strategy as you teach it. • Remember to tell students what the strategy is, how to use it, and when to use it. • Teach and apply strategies across the curriculum. • During reading, note or ask the student what strategies are being used. • In planning for teaching a book, decide which comprehension strategies and themes to develop throughout the book. • Lesson plans should include activities to develop comprehension before students begin to read. Determine and plan instruction for concepts, background knowledge, and vocabulary critical to understanding the selection. • Instead of asking students to answer a series of comprehension questions after reading, develop one open-ended question that will promote meaningful oral and/or written responses.

Upon completion of this lesson, students will be able to examine the reasons the author structured the text in a particular order, which requires the students to utilize their analytic and evaluation skills. The students will also be able to question both the author and each other about the Business Education topic presented. Finally, the students will be able to respond in writing to positions posed by the author, which utilizes their synthesis and summarizing skills.

GPS Standards
Standard1: SCSh9. Students will enhance reading in all curriculum areas by:
Discussing books:
b. 5 Examine author’s purpose in writing.
Standard 2 ELA10LSV1 The student participates in student-to-teacher, student-to-student, and group verbal interactions. The student:
Clarifies, illustrates, or expands on a response when asked to do so; asks classmates for similar expansions. BCS-BI-1. Students will demonstrate an understanding of basic banking concepts, terminology and operating procedures.


• Business Education Article “Who Wants Extra Credit” • Student Journals • Pencils • Highlighters


At the beginning of class, all students will be informed that today’s lesson will focus on reading comprehension. I will tell them that they will be reading an article on building Credit. They will then be put in cooperative groups of three or four, making sure the groups consist of mixed abilities. As an activator, I will call on a couple of students to verbally describe and discuss what we’ve been learning so far.

Step-by-Step Outline of Activities

1) Students will be instructed to get in their groups, and told that their group conversation and responses need to be recorded in their inquiry journal. 2) Next, I will pick a small portion of the text that is both interesting and can spark good conversation. 3) Next I will display questions that encourage critical thinking such as: What is the author saying? Why do you think the author used the following phrase? Does this make sense to you? 4) The students will be instructed to record their answers to the questions in their journals.

Modeling/Guided Practice:

• I will display a controversial, or potentially challenging passage from the article or text along with one or two questions which are written ahead of time on the board, computer projector, or overhead. • I will then Model for students how to (as an expert reader) think through the questions. • Next, I will Model how to look for context clues, and utilize a highlighter. • Finally, I will “Coach” students on how to use strategies that are posted on the wall chart in the classroom

Independent Practice:

• I will invite small groups to read and work through the questions which have been previously prepared. Students will record their discussions in their logs. • When students ask questions that go unanswered, I will encourage them to work together to determine the answer.

Closing: • To close the lesson, I will have representatives from each group share questions and have whole class continue to discuss as a group and record in their logs.


Students will be informally assessed by way of their quality of discussion and participation in class and group activities. They will be formally assessed by receiving a classwork grade from their written responses. The results will give me, the teacher, an indication as to whether the lesson helped students comprehend the text at a deeper level.


The National Reading Panel (2000) reports two major finding from its extensive review of text comprehension instruction. The first point is that teachers should not rely on one comprehension strategy to teach a class of diverse learners. This is one of the reasons I structured this plan as I did, primarily because it’s a Business Education class consisting of various grade levels and academic abilities. The second point the NRP makes is that teaching comprehension in the context of specific academic areas like Business Education, can be effective if the student has appropriate language and reading skills. In terms of the benefits of this particular lesson, one of the most important aspects of it was the “coaching “ strategy which guided student discussions and writing as they made connections to the text. I also believe that it is important to ask open-ended questions in guided practice activities and discussions, in effort to help the students focus on what they learn, and determine their understanding level of the text.


Best Practices in Writing Instruction. (Graham, S., MacArthur, C., & Fitzgerald, J. (2007). Guildford Press.

Gillet, J., Temple, C., & Crawford, A. (2008). Understanding reading problems assessment and instruction. Allyn and Bacon.

Mercer, C., & Mercer A. (2005). Teaching Students with Learning Problems (7th edition). New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall

National Reading Panel (2000). Report of the National Reading Panel; Teaching Children to Read. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office

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