D.A.R.E - North Rocks Public School

Passive Reader
Active Reader
Explicit and
systematic teaching
of necessary skills.
to practise
skills learnt.
Language is acquired naturally, we will
communicate in the language or languages we
are exposed to. If you grow up in a home where
Spanish is spoken, guess what, you will speak
Spanish. This occurs naturally.
Reading is not naturally acquired, you will not
learn the skills needed to read by being exposed
to books (although vitally important), these skills
need to be taught in an explicit and systematic
Reading is the ability
to construct meaning
from written text.
Children must develop the following skills;
 Decoding Skills - Written symbols are
converted into words.
 Comprehension Skills - Understanding
the meaning of the words.
Reading is a message getting, problem
solving activity.
There are two distinct parts to decoding.
Part 1 involves spoken language (auditory
skills and strategies), and Part 2 involves
written language (visual skills and strategies).
These parts must come together in order to
read successfully.
Phonemic awareness is the ability to hear,
separate and manipulate the sounds in spoken
words, and the understanding that spoken words
are made up of sequences of speech sounds.
A student needs to be explicitly taught that;
 speech is a group of words strung together
 that this group of words can then be broken
down into separate, individual words
 these individual words can be broken down
even further into separate sounds
The cat climbed the tree.
word level
sound level
climbed the tree
It is the most powerful predictor of reading acquisition. If
a student has poor phonemic awareness, this will
ultimately affect their reading ability and comprehension.
Students are only able to store a specific amount of
words in their memory as sight words. If they are unable
to recognise that spoken words can be separated into
sounds there will come a time when their ability to tackle
unknown words becomes an impossibility.
A student with poor phonemic awareness has to spend a
lot of time predicting what the next word is going to be.
This means that they are unable to concentrate on
comprehension when they are reading.
A successful phonemic awareness program is explicit, systematic
and multi-sensory.
The following learning experiences will develop phonemic
awareness skills. These learning experiences are sensitising
students to the fact that words come apart.
rhyming words - being able to tell that two words rhyme
counting words in a sentence
segmenting and blending syllables
segmenting and blending onset and rime (bl-ack, fl-at, dr-ink)
counting phonemes (sounds) in words
segmenting and blending phonemes (sounds)
substitution of sounds
Phonics involves connections between
printed letters and speech sounds.
 Students are explicitly and systematically
taught that sounds correspond to letters,
and they now have a strategy for decoding
unfamiliar words.
 Students are not only articulating the
sounds but they are matching the sounds
to symbols.
This is the transition from an auditory strategy
to a visual strategy.
counting words in a sentence
segmenting and blending syllables
segmenting and blending onset and rime
(bl-ack, fl-at, dr-ink)
counting phonemes in words
segmenting and blending phonemes
substitution of sounds
Learning is enhanced
by the use of
These are words that appear most
frequently in words, they do not conform
to phonic rules and they need to be
memorised as a visual chunk.
Some following words are examples of
sight words;
said do was of all
Fluency - Reading fluency is the ability to read a text
smoothly, clearly, and at an appropriate pace. The goal
is to comprehend what is being read.
Vocabulary - This refers to an understanding of the
meaning of words being read. Poor vocabulary
knowledge leads to poor comprehension. It is critical to
develop a broad vocabulary.
Comprehension - It is important to make sense of
words in context. It is simply not enough to know the
meaning of the word, it is necessary to understand its
meaning in relation to the words around it.
In learning to read, students must learn to use and
integrate four sources of information (processing systems).
The semantic (word meaning) processing system.
The reader asks, does this make sense?
The syntactic (grammar) processing system.
The reader asks, Does this sound right?
The graphological (written language) and phonological
(sounding out) processing systems.
The reader checks, do the sounds I want to say match the
words on the page?
All four sources of information are explicitly
and systematically taught and then practised.
The reader has to access and integrate all sources of
information fluently and continuously as they read.
When faced with an unfamiliar word, the reader attempts to
problem solve by asking....
Does this make sense? (Meaning)
Does it sound right? (Grammar)
Do the sounds I want to say match the words on the page?
(Phonemic awareness and Phonics)
Top Tips
It is very important to pre-read the book; this gives
you a good understanding of the text, and allows
you to identify any difficult words. This also directs
your questioning.
When asking questions, remember to guide your
child in the right direction, don't give them the
 Good
readers activate prior
knowledge before reading.
 When you read to a child
you are modelling good
reading strategies.
 Use the think – aloud
Discuss the following; title, author, illustration on
the cover.
Scan through the book together, discussing the
pictures and making predictions. Ask questions.
Have your child make predictions about the
book, and ask why?
Give your child the opportunity to draw on their own experiences that relate to
the experiences found in the book. For example, have you even moved to a
new home? Do you remember what that was like?
Make predictions
Ask the who, what, when, where and why questions.
Identify and talk about difficult words.
Ask for a summary of the plot.
Sequence the events in the story.
What are the main ideas?
Use the Pause, Prompt, Praise strategy. When your child comes to an
unknown word allow them a few seconds to work it out, if they still do not
know the word provide them with an explicit prompt, such as what letter does
the word begin with? If they still do not know the word, give it to them and
show them a way of working it out. Always praise them for taking a risk and
having a go.
Summarise the plot.
Retell the events in the books in the correct
Review and evaluate the predictions made
prior to reading the book.
Ask your child how they felt about the book.
Did they enjoy it? Why? Why not?
Re-read the book to further develop
expression, fluency, comprehension and
most importantly for enjoyment.
use this strategy when the child is reading an
unknown word
use at instructional level (90 - 95% correct)
allow a pause for at least 5 seconds
encourage the child to read to the end of the
give the child an explicit prompt
praise the child for having a go
(What Makes Sense)
Look at the picture.
Can you see something
in the picture which starts
like that?
Try that again and think
what would make sense.
Try that again and think
about what is happening
in the story.
What would you say
What is happening in the
Does that make sense?
What else could you try?
Could it be....?
(How Sentences Work)
How would you say it?
Try that again and think
how you would say it?
Listen to your voice.
Does that sound right?
About Print
Do you know a word that
starts with those letters?
Do you know another
word like that?
Do you know a word
which ends with those
Can you see a part that
you know?
Can you see a little word
in that word?
Can you see something
that you know from
somewhere else?
(What Makes Sense)
• Did that make sense?
• You said....did that
make sense?
(How Sentences Work)
About Print
• You said....does that
• You said...does that
sound right?
look right?
• Is that how you say it? • It could be...that made
• Can we say it that
sense..., but look at...
• Check to see if what
• Did that sound right?
you read looks right.
• That was a good
try...it makes sense,
but what would you
see at the beginning
• You make a mistake
on this line...see if you
can find it?
Re-reading a book has a purpose, it increases fluency,
reinforces new sight words, improves comprehension
and expression.
When re-reading;
 encourage and model fluency
 encourage and model expression, this can be
 ensure the reader is attending to punctuation
 ask new questions
 praise honestly and explicitly. I liked the way you used
your talking voice.
 smile
am able to decode unknown words using
auditory (phonemic awareness) and
visual strategies (phonics)
 read fluently
 understand the vocabulary
 comprehend what I am reading
 actively and constantly monitor my
Thank you!

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