HOW TO HELP YOUR KIDS READ IT AND GET IT! Sounding out or decoding words is just part of reading. If children don't understand what they read, they're not really reading. If they don't unlock meaning as they read, the words don't make sense, and the joy of reading can be lost. 7 Keys to Unlock Meaning: 1. Create mental images: Good readers use their senses to create images in their mind about what is happening in the story their reading. 2. Use background knowledge: Good readers use prior knowledge before, during, and after reading to increase their understanding. 3. Ask questions: Good readers wonder about what's happening before, during, and after reading. 4. Make inferences: Good readers use prior knowledge and information to make predictions, seek answers, and draw conclusions. 5. Determine the most important ideas or themes: Good readers identify key ideas or themes as they read. 6. Synthesize information: Good readers track their thinking as they read and it evolves. 7. Use fix up strategies: Good readers are aware of when they understand and when they don't. Using a wide range of problem solving strategies including skipping ahead, rereading, asking questions, and reading the passage aloud.
*Excerpted from: 7 Keys to Comprehension: How to Help Your Kids Read It and Get It!