10+ Strategies of How to Teach Reading Comprehension in the Class

In the field of education, the development of reading skill plays a crucial role for students’ academic success. With the aim of equipping educators with effective tools, VTJ will discuss 10+ strategies on how to teach reading comprehension in the classroom. These strategies embrace a range of approaches, from explicit instruction to interactive activities, designed to engage students and enhance their understanding of written texts. By implementing these strategies, teachers can foster critical thinking, vocabulary expansion, and overall reading proficiency among their students.

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The 5 Elements of Reading Instruction

How to Teach Reading Comprehension in the Class

How to Teach Reading Comprehension in the Class

When it comes to effective reading instruction, educators rely on a well-rounded approach that encompasses five key elements. These elements form the foundation for developing strong reading skills in students.The five elements are:

  • When it comes to effective reading instruction, educators rely on a well-rounded approach that encompasses five key elements. These elements form the foundation for developing strong reading skills in students.The five elements are:
  • Phonemic Awareness: This element focuses on developing the ability to hear, identify, and manipulate individual sounds (phonemes) in spoken words. Phonemic awareness lays the groundwork for phonics instruction and helps students understand the relationship between letters and sounds.
  • Phonics: Phonics involves teaching the relationship between letters and the sounds they represent. By learning phonics, students can decode words and read unfamiliar words more accurately, improving their reading fluency.
  • Fluency: Fluency is the ability to read with accuracy, speed, and expression.  Through repeated reading, modeling, and guided practice, students develop fluency skills that enhance their comprehension and engagement with texts.
  • Vocabulary: Vocabulary development is crucial for understanding and interpreting the meaning of words encountered in texts. A rich vocabulary allows students to comprehend complex texts and communicate effectively.
  • Reading Comprehension: Reading comprehension is the ultimate goal of reading instruction. It involves understanding the meaning of a text, making connections, drawing inferences, and critically analyzing the information presented.

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10+ Strategies of How to Teach Reading Comprehension in the Class

10+ Strategies of How to Teach Reading Comprehension in the Class

10+ Strategies of How to Teach Reading Comprehension in the Class

Assess Student Ability First

Assessing student ability is a fundamental strategy when it comes to teaching reading comprehension in the class. Before diving into any reading comprehension activities, it is essential for teachers to have a clear understanding of each student’s current reading level and comprehension skills. This assessment process helps identify individual strengths and areas that need improvement, allowing teachers to tailor their instruction accordingly. To assess student ability, educators can use a combination of standardized tests, reading assessments, and informal observations during class activities. Additionally, comprehension checks, discussions, and one-on-one conferences can provide valuable insights into students’ comprehension of various texts. By understanding the unique needs of each student, teachers can design targeted reading comprehension activities and provide appropriate support. 

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Choral Reading/Partner Reading

Choral reading or partner reading are valuable strategies to enhance reading comprehension and engagement in the classroom. In Choral Reading, students read a text together as a group, synchronizing their voices to create a unified reading experience. This activity not only improves students’ fluency and pronunciation but also fosters a sense of collaboration and teamwork. On the other hand, Partner Reading involves pairing students to read together in small groups. This interactive approach encourages students to take turns reading aloud and discuss the text with their partners, promoting deeper understanding and critical thinking. Choral Reading and Partner Reading provide opportunities for peer support and enable students to clarify their doubts and share insights, making the reading experience more enjoyable and interactive. These strategies can be particularly beneficial for reluctant readers, as they provide a supportive environment and build confidence in their reading abilities.

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Use Visual Aids

Using visual aids is a powerful and effective strategy to enhance reading comprehension in the classroom. Visual aids, such as charts, graphs, diagrams, illustrations, and graphic organizers, provide students with visual representations of the information they are reading. These visual cues help students make connections, identify patterns, and understand complex concepts more easily. Additionally, visual aids can help clarify abstract or challenging concepts, making the content more accessible and engaging for all students.

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Assign Reading Buddies Across Ages & Grades

Assigning reading buddies across ages and grades is an innovative and beneficial approach to foster a supportive and inclusive learning environment in the classroom. In this strategy, older students are paired with younger ones to work together on reading activities and share their love for literature. Reading buddies serve as mentors, providing guidance and encouragement to their younger counterparts, while younger students receive personalized attention and motivation to improve their reading skills. This cross-age interaction not only enhances reading comprehension but also promotes empathy, communication, and social skills among students. Older buddies develop leadership and mentoring abilities, while younger buddies gain confidence and a sense of belonging. The reading buddy system fosters a sense of community and camaraderie, breaking down barriers between different grade levels and creating a positive, cooperative atmosphere in the classroom. 

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Implement Audiobooks

Audiobooks provide students with the opportunity to listen to fluent and expressive readings of texts while following along with the printed version. This multisensory approach engages both auditory and visual modalities, reinforcing comprehension and improving overall understanding. Audiobooks can be particularly beneficial for struggling readers, English language learners, and students with learning disabilities, as they remove barriers related to decoding and fluency. By listening to skilled narrators, students can focus on the meaning and interpretation of the text, making connections, and analyzing the story elements. Audiobooks also expose students to different accents, intonations, and pacing, enhancing their listening skills and expanding their exposure to diverse literature.

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Teach Academic English

Academic English refers to the language and communication skills necessary for success in academic settings, including understanding complex texts, analyzing information critically, and expressing ideas effectively. By explicitly teaching academic vocabulary, sentence structures, and discourse patterns, educators equip students with the tools to comprehend and communicate in various academic disciplines. Additionally, emphasizing academic language in reading activities helps students develop the ability to interpret and discuss academic texts with confidence and clarity.

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Have Students Summarize What They Read

Summarizing requires students to identify the main ideas and key details of a text and condense them into a concise and coherent summary. This activity not only helps students develop their ability to extract important information from a passage but also encourages them to think critically and engage with the text on a deeper level. By summarizing what they read, students are able to demonstrate their understanding of the material and consolidate their learning. Additionally, summarizing can be a valuable tool for assessing students’ comprehension and identifying areas where they may need additional support or clarification.

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Expose Students to Different Discourse Patterns

Introducing students to various ways of organizing and presenting information can help them become more versatile and adaptable in their own writing and speaking. Different discourse patterns, such as cause and effect, problem and solution, compare and contrast, and narrative structures, offer students a range of options to express their thoughts and ideas. This exposure not only expands their repertoire of language structures but also enhances their critical thinking abilities as they analyze and understand how different patterns shape the meaning and impact of a message. Moreover, being familiar with diverse discourse patterns enables students to better comprehend and engage with a wide range of texts, including academic, professional, and literary works. 

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Let Students Choose the Books They Read

When students have the freedom to select books that align with their interests, they become more motivated and engaged in the reading process. This autonomy fosters a sense of ownership and personal connection to the material, making reading a more enjoyable and meaningful experience. As they are more likely to be invested in the characters, themes, and stories that resonate with their individual preferences.Explore a variety of texts that capture their curiosity and imagination, they are more inclined to develop critical thinking skills, expand their vocabulary, and improve their comprehension abilities. This strategy promotes a growth mindset towards reading, inspiring a lifelong love for books and an enthusiastic pursuit of knowledge among students.

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Have Students Read the Same Content Multiple Times

Repetitive reading allows students to revisit the material, reinforcing their comprehension of the text and enhancing their retention of key information. Each reading experience offers new insights and connections, enabling students to notice details they might have missed during their initial encounter with the content. Additionally, repeated readings contribute to improved fluency and accuracy, as students become more familiar with the vocabulary and sentence structures. This strategy also cultivates confidence in students’ reading abilities, as they gain a sense of mastery over the material with each subsequent reading.

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Easy Steps of How to Teach Reading to Kids

Easy Steps of How to Teach Reading to Kids

Easy Steps of How to Teach Reading to Kids

Start With Phonemic Awareness

Before kids can decode words and understand text, they need to be able to identify and manipulate individual sounds (phonemes) in spoken words. Engaging activities such as rhyming games, sound blending, and segmenting words into their individual sounds lay a solid foundation for their reading journey. Phonemic awareness exercises help kids grasp the connection between spoken language and written words, enabling them to navigate the complexities of reading with greater ease.

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Teach Sight Words

Sight words, also known as high-frequency words, are essential in early reading development. These are commonly used words that often do not follow the typical phonetic rules and must be recognized instantly by sight. Introducing sight words to kids helps improve reading fluency and comprehension, as they encounter these words frequently in various texts. By memorizing sight words, kids can read with greater speed and accuracy, boosting their confidence and encouraging further exploration of texts.

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Introduce Letter Sounds

Teaching kids the sounds associated with each letter of the alphabet is a crucial step in phonics instruction. By understanding letter sounds, kids can begin decoding words and recognizing how individual letters come together to form words. Introducing letter sounds in a systematic and engaging manner helps kids bridge the gap between spoken and written language, setting the stage for reading success.

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Teach Word Families

Word families are groups of words that share the same ending sound and similar spelling patterns. Introducing kids to word families enhances their reading skills by helping them recognize patterns and relationships between words. For example, when kids learn the word family “-at,” they can easily read words like “bat,” “cat,” and “mat.” By understanding word families, kids can read a wide range of words with confidence and build their vocabulary simultaneously.

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Use Stories to Teach Reading

Stories are a powerful tool to engage kids in reading and ignite their imagination. Engaging narratives, captivating characters, and intriguing plots captivate young minds, making the reading experience enjoyable and rewarding. By exposing kids to a variety of stories, including folktales, fairy tales, and modern literature, educators can stimulate their curiosity.

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Make Reading Fun with Games

Incorporating interactive reading games and activities into the classroom makes the learning process enjoyable and engaging. Educational board games, reading scavenger hunts, and interactive storytelling sessions not only reinforce reading skills but also encourage collaboration and creativity among young readers.

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Encourage Kids to Read Independently

Providing access to a wide variety of age-appropriate books and reading materials encourages kids to explore and read independently. Having a diverse selection of books available in the classroom or school library allows kids to choose texts that match their interests and reading levels. Independent reading nurtures a sense of autonomy and ownership over their learning journey, then kids become active participants in their reading development.

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Help Kids Understand What They Are Reading

Encouraging kids to actively engage with the content they read is essential for improving reading comprehension. Teachers can ask questions and initiate discussions about the text, helping kids make connections and gain a deeper understanding of the material. Facilitating conversations about characters, plot developments, and themes, educators help kids become more critical and analytical readers, enhancing their ability to comprehend and interpret texts effectively.

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Teach Kids to Use Context Clues

Context clues are the words or phrases surrounding an unfamiliar word that provide hints about its meaning. By guiding kids to use context clues, they can decipher the meaning of unknown words, enabling them to comprehend the text more easily. This skill empowers kids to become independent readers who can tackle challenging texts with confidence.

Monitor Kids’ Reading Progress

Regularly assessing kids’ reading progress and providing constructive feedback is essential for tracking their growth and tailoring instruction to their needs. Teachers can use various methods, such as reading assessments, reading logs, and comprehension checks, to monitor individual progress and identify problems that may require additional support. Celebrating each child’s reading achievements and providing encouragement and guidance contribute to building a positive and supportive learning environment.

By following these 10 easy steps on how to teach reading, educators can create a nurturing and effective learning environment that empowers kids to become confident and proficient readers. These strategies cater to the diverse needs of young learners and ensure that reading is a joyous and enriching experience. By sparking a passion for reading at an early age, educators set the foundation for a lifelong love of learning through books.


What is the most important reading skill?

=> The most important reading skill is comprehension. Comprehension refers to the ability to understand and make meaning from written text. It involves not only decoding words and understanding their individual meanings but also grasping the overall message, identifying main ideas, making inferences, and connecting information within and across texts.

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Vietnam Teaching Jobs (VTJ), which was founded in 2012 is a well-established platform for teachers to find their dream teaching job in Vietnam. Covering the entirety of the country, we have successfully paired thousands of happy teachers and schools. Be part of the thousands of happy teachers working in Vietnam, register and apply for your dream job today!