Understanding Texts & Readers: Responsive Comprehension Instruction with Leveled Texts (Paperback)
Goals help guide my thinking about reader's skills within each level of text complexity, and a leveling system helps my understanding of readers' development from level to level.
Understanding Texts & Readers makes comprehension make sense. In it, Jennifer Serravallo narrows the distance between assessment and instruction. She maps the four fiction and four nonfiction comprehension goals she presented in The Reading Strategies Book to fourteen text levels and shares sample responses that show what to expect from readers at each.
Jen simplifies text complexity and clarifies comprehension instruction. She begins by untangling the many threads of comprehension: Levels, engagement, stamina, the relevance of texts, and much more. Then level by level she:
- calls out with precision how plot and setting, character, vocabulary and figurative language, and themes and ideas change as fiction across levels
- specifies how the complexity of main idea, key details, vocabulary, and text features increases in nonfiction texts
- points out what to expect from a reader as text characteristics change
- provides samples of student responses to texts at each level
- shares progressions across levels to support instructional planning.
Even if you haven't read the book your reader is responding to, you'll have the background necessary to make great teaching decisions for all your readers. Understanding subtle shifts and increases in demands from level to level, writes Jennifer Serravallo, can guide what a teacher asks a student, what the teacher expects of the student, and what the teacher, therefore, teaches the student.
Want to become a master of matching kids to books? Looking to take the difficult out of differentiation? Or do you want to dramatically increase the power and responsiveness of Jen's Reading Strategies Book? Understanding Texts & Readers shows you how to move forward when students need to make progress.
About the Author
Jennifer Serravallo is the author of New York Times' bestseller The Reading Strategies Book as well as other popular Heinemann professional books, The Writing Strategies Book; Teaching Reading in Small Groups; and The Literacy Teacher's Playbook, Grades K - 2 and Grades 3 - 6. Her newest titles are Teaching Writing in Small Groups (publishing March of 2021) and Connecting with Students Online, from which she will donate a portion of the proceeds to organizations serving children directly impacted by COVID-19. Her other recent books include Understanding Texts & Readers and A Teacher's Guide to Reading Conferences as well as the Spanish-language counterparts to her strategies books, El libro de estrategias de lectura and El libro de estrategias de escritura. Jen's Complete Comprehension: Fiction and Complete Comprehension: Nonfiction are assessment and teaching resources that expand upon the comprehension skill progressions from Understanding Texts & Readers and offer hundreds more strategies like those in The Reading Strategies Book. Additionally, Jen is the author of the On-Demand Courses Strategies in Action: Reading and Writing Methods and Content and Teaching Reading in Small Groups: Matching Methods to Purposes, where you can watch dozens of videos of Jen teaching in real classrooms and engage with other educators in a self-guided course. Jen is a member of Parents Magazine Board of Advisors for education and literacy. She began her career in education as a NYC public school teacher and later joined the Teachers College Reading and Writing Project at Columbia University. Through TCRWP, and now as an independent consultant, she has spent over a decade helping teachers across the country to create literacy classrooms where students are joyfully engaged and the instruction is meaningfully individualized to students' goals. Jen holds a BA from Vassar College and an MA from Teachers College, where she has also taught graduate and undergraduate classes. Learn more about Jen and her work at https: //www.heinemann.com/jenniferserravallo/, on Twitter @jserravallo, on Instagram @jenniferserravallo, or by joining The Reading and Writing Strategies Facebook Community.