Friday, September 19, 2008

Topic: Reading--Miscue Analysis

10-second review: Clinical diagnosis of reading difficulties.

Title: “Reading: You Can Get Back to Kansas Anytime You’re Ready, Dorothy.” Kenneth S. Goodman. English Journal (November 1974), 62-64. A publication of the National Council of Teachers of English.

Comment: Excuse the cutesy title. I do not speak as an expert on miscue analysis. However, I think I have the ordinary secondary English teacher’s point of view. Miscue analysis, listening carefully to mistakes students make when they read aloud, has a large bibliography to support it. Essentially, students read individually to the teacher and the teacher records the types of mistakes the student makes and helps the students with strategies to learn to correct those mistakes. RayS.

Quote: “We learn to listen to what miscues a reader makes, what effect they have on meaning, whether the reader corrects when the meaning is lost or disrupted. We find the strengths that the miscues reveal and build on them. We teach for comprehension strategies, confirmation strategies, correction strategies.”

Comment: The key is strategies. If the student mispronounces a word, doesn’t recognize it, what can we teach the student to do about that? If the student reads orally, smoothly, but understands nothing, what can we teach students to do about it? If the student ignores punctuation and therefore loses track of meaning, what can we help the student do in order to see and use the punctuation to aid in meaning?

I don’t have any definitive answers to these questions, but I know what the problem is, and, together, the student and I can develop a strategy to help overcome these problems in comprehension. Note that I said this is a “clinical,” one-on-one, approach to reading problems. RayS.

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