Hidden deep within Mr. Blankenship's Pages is this gem of a document. This guide is overflowing with pre-reading activities and strategies to activate students' prior knowledge on a topic. Each activity description includes the purpose of the activity, the procedure, as well as sample questions/topics for students to explore. Additionally, Mr. Blankenship provides additional resources that are print-ready to facilitate several of the activities. I definitely recommend printing this one!
Help your students organize and share their prior knowledge before reading with a K-W-L chart. A K-W-L chart also deepens a student's commitment to the reading by asking the student to record what he/she hopes to learn from the piece. This article by KWL creator, Donna Ogle, explains the procedure and the pedagogy behind it.
This blog by Terri Zezula on the Scientific Learning website is a reader-friendly overview to pre-reading strategies that assist students in establishing their intentions for reading. Zezula explains why determining reading intentions and "priming the mind" (activating prior knowlede) are key to improving reading comprehension. This is a great blog because, while the activities included directly and explicitly prime the reader and develop intention, they are general and simple as well.
This sample lesson by TeacherVision provides detailed instructions for introducing a reading lesson about developing and answering pre-reading questions. I love the creativity in this particular lesson and the ways it supports various student strengths. Additionally, the links to additional resources related to the lesson plan make this a handy instructional tool.
Dr. Andy Johnson provides a great description of several pre-reading activities in this video mini-lecture. While presenting each activity, Dr. Johnson also gives helpful suggestions for when and how to use each activity in the classroom. I like this video specifically because Dr. Johnson offers realistic ways to modify the various activities as well as his references to other resources.
This professional development slideshow by the Rhode Island Department of Education presents a comprehensive overview of pre-reading strategies that can be used in a variety of instructional settings. This resource discusses what pre-reading is and why it should be used, as well as some of the challenges to using pre-reading as an instructional activity.I refer to this slideshow when lesson planning as a reminder as to the purpose of my pre-reading activities.
In this short video by The Balanced Literacy Diet, several pre-reading strategies are demonstrated as an exciting and interactive whole group lesson that can easily be applied to a guided reading lesson. Here, the teacher builds student interest in the text, introduces key vocabulary, has students identify story elements and guides the students in making predictions about the text. I enjoyed this video because of the creativity in the lesson.
This collection of pre-reading activities by Mandy Gregory is amazing and can be used for whole group instruction, centers, individual reading, as well as guided reading groups! This is a great resource for teachers just building their activities toolbox, in addition to those teachers that want to try something new. Gregory includes a description of each activity; an example of when and how she uses the activity; as well as links to printables and resources for that particular activity.