How many times have you had a wonderful guided reading session and then send the kids for Read-to-Self time then you look up and notice them not reading? They aren’t playing around, just not reading. Fake reading. Serravallo states it this way, “without engagement, we’ve got nothing.” Well isn’t that the truth?!?!
On page 45, she states, “An engaged reader is often one who is “motivated to read, strategic in their approaches to comprehending what they read, knowledgeable in their construction of meaning from text, and socially interactive while reading.”
Wow! We need to build that Reading engagement and Goal #2 helps us with that! It helps teachers of reading with strategies to teach readers to enter into the “Reading zone” or flow of reading.
Strategy 2.1 A Perfect Reading Spot
This is one of my favorite strategies in this section. I feel like it is my favorite strategy because finding a perfect reading spot is essential to maintaining focus during a student’s reading zone time. If a student struggles to pay attention and attend to text, then if that you are in a spot that is distracting to them, they will not be successful at doing their reading zone time. Picking a spot that is perfect for them if essential to them being successful.
How many times even as an adult do you get distracted while reading? As adults, we know that we have to go back and re-read the sections that we were distracted in order to comprehend the text. But kids possibly won’t do that without being taught. In strategy 2.3, it helps with teaching kids to go back and re-read the part in your book when they get distracted! I remember this happening to me very much as an elementary school student. But instead of going back and rereading the text, I would continue on reading even though I didn’t know what the text was even talking about. I would then not do well if there were comprehension questions that went with the reading passage or book. I believe this is why this strategy was an important one to me. If I had been taught and modeled how to go back and reread to get back in my book, I would’ve been a more successful and focused reader.
Strategy 2.13 Mind Over Matter
Another strategy that I thought was an important one was strategy 2.13, Mind Over Matter. I don’t only think this is a strategy just for reading time, however, I believe this is a life skill for all subject matters for all grade levels. This strategy discusses being engaged even when you don’t want to be engaged. This made me think back to college and my Environmental Biology coursework. Did I love learning about Environmental Biology? No. The thought of it made my stomach turn. It was one of those core classes that I had to take in order to finally be able to study what I cameto college for, Education. But I knew I had to get through it! I knew I had to put in my mind that Environmental Biology was something that I wanted to learn about and I made myself feel it was engaging. Were there times that I had to go back and reread because I had lost my attention? Yes. Were there times that I had to retell and go over the facts that I had learned and chunk out long sections that I thought were boring? Yes. But it was something that I had to do. I had to get my mind ready for reading. This strategy is an important life skill to teach students. There won’t always be reading that the student’s are interested in. There won’t always be reading that describes the student’s reading identity. And that’s ok 👌🏽. What I found in that Environmental Biology course, was the more that I changed my attitude about my reading and the more that I read, it became more interesting to me. The more I learned. This life skill in reading will help students learn too.