Hello and Welcome to Phonics and Homeschooling. The resources for teach children at home. A method of teaching reading in which people learn to associate letters with the speech sounds they represent, rather than learning to recognize the whole word as a unit. Also find information about children education at home or Homeschooling.

Improving Reading Skills

Word study is one way for the older student to improve reading ability. This involves using a dictionary and thesaurus, studying word parts, and learning how to find the meaning of a word from the context. Students can also improve their vocabularies by paying conscious attention to any new words they may encounter.

Because a mature reader must have several different reading rates available for different materials and purposes, practice in skimming a passage for general meaning and scanning for specific information is useful.

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The development of efficient study strategies is important in learning various kinds of subject matter. One useful study technique is outlining, which helps to develop an awareness of the main points and details of a selection.

Various studies have shown the importance of good teaching and of effective school leadership in promoting reading achievement. Students seem to learn to read better, for example, if the school principal is a strong leader with high expectations about reading achievement. The amount of direct instruction in reading and the amount of time students spend in reading-related activities also affect reading development.

Reading tests are of two main types: survey and diagnostic. Survey tests, used with groups, measure one or more aspects of reading. Diagnostic tests usually are given individually as part of a battery of tests measuring many different components of reading skill.

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Most standardized reading-achievement tests are survey tests; they may be either norm referenced or criterion referenced. Norm-referenced tests compare an individual child's performance to that of other children taking the same test and yield a grade level or a percentile score. Criterion-referenced tests measure individual reading subskills and indicate the skills mastered, those needing review, and those in which the student needs extra help.

A special type of criterion-referenced test is the minimum competency test. Most states administer these tests to gauge students' reading ability during certain grades in elementary school and at the end of their high school careers. Some minimum competency tests include reading tasks resembling those in the everyday world, such as following directions on a form or reading signs and labels, job applications, and portions of a newspaper.

Diagnostic tests can also be either norm or criterion referenced. These tests are given by specialists in reading or learning disabilities, as well as by classroom teachers, to define a student's specific areas of reading strengths and weaknesses that can be used in planning an effective teaching program.