Homework Help

Getting students to actually readMore than once I have had a student tell me, "I...

user profile pic

bigdreams1 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Associate Educator

Posted May 1, 2011 at 6:34 PM via web

dislike 3 like
Getting students to actually read

More than once I have had a student tell me, "I haven't read a book in English class since early middle school." Students pass literature classes by reading summaries and listening to me go over the plot in class. This frustrates me, because students are missing so much of the power and the nuance of the original work. But I have been unsuccessful at getting them to actually read.  Any ideas?

37 Answers | Add Yours

user profile pic

clairewait | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 2, 2011 at 7:52 AM (Answer #6)

dislike 1 like

In light of the ease the Internet has provided for staying "caught up" without actually reading, I've changed my entire classroom approach to teaching literature.

There is very little homework in my class and never reading homework.  I've accepted the fact that most high school students are simply too busy to read, and those who aren't are reading something on their own anyway.

I read all novels with my class in class.  I do a lot of reading aloud and having them follow along.  My principal originally got on me for this but it has been proven to increase comprehension.  It also allows me to model "reading and thinking aloud."  It also allows me to stop and ask questions, or for students to stop me and ask questions.  I have had an extremely positive response in all classes of all ages to this approach.

I also do a lot of paired reading where students sit together to read aloud to each other.  I never go down the line and have students read aloud to the entire class.  It is painful for everyone.  But for the most part, when they are allowed to pick their partners, most of my studens will pair-up with a friend (someone with whom they feel comfortable) and will actually read.

I also do reciprocal reading.  If you are unfamiliar with this technique, it requires very specific written assignments (created in advance by you) where students work in groups of 3 or 4 to read together to "find" answers and discuss the story as they read together.

Finally, and by far my most impactful practice in my classroom, is that I provide 45 minutes every Friday for required silent reading.  I make students choose a book and tell me what it is so they aren't constantly switching novels and only getting through the first 5 pages.  Every 6 weeks we have "book project presentations" or "book talks" in which students bring food and drinks, sit in circles, and talk about what they are reading.  THEY LOVE IT.  It took some time to develop this, but after a year or so, I was able to recommend so many books because of what I knew many students enjoyed.

All of these take away from the amount of material you can cover in a semester.  However, I'm over quantity and am pushing quality lessons and quality learning.

user profile pic

Lori Steinbach | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 1, 2011 at 7:35 PM (Answer #2)

dislike 0 like

I could not agree more with this frustration--as I help write those summaries for kids to read. (I feel a bit hypocritical, of course.) Unfortunately, the internet has made it way too easy for kids to "cheat" in class. I have no sure answer, but I do have a few small ideas. All of them involve catching them in the act, so to speak. One is to have them write something in the same style and diction as the author after reading a chapter or two. (For example, I ask them to "Hawthornize" a simple sentence: The forest was dark.) It's pretty easy to tell who has and has not actually been reading the author's words. Another is to give at least one quiz question which cannot be answered by the cheat sites. Generally that would be some relatively minor detail or some kind of personal response which would be difficult to generate without having read. Third, if I know the chapter is a particularly captivating one, I try to read in class and quit at some climactic moment to encourage them to want to actually read what happens next.

You are not alone.

user profile pic

kiwi | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted May 1, 2011 at 8:38 PM (Answer #3)

dislike 0 like

I think in the multi-technical age we may need to clearly qualify what we mean by 'read'. Do we mean see the author's wrds on a page, or can the appreciation of a text include its presentation in different forrms. Can we use e-readers and/or unabridged audio recordings? We need to think of the skills we wish students to embrace in the modern age. Don't get me wrong - I want them to read like I did at 18, but then there was not the diversity of presentation of a story back then. We need to look at the world as it is, texts as they are and embrace that reading styles change over time. Students probably 'read' as much as we did, just their information is chunked and in newer forms. Long live the novel, but look forward as well as back.

user profile pic

accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 2, 2011 at 3:53 AM (Answer #4)

dislike 0 like

Getting them to actually read? Woah. Is that what we are supposed to be doing? I thought we were meant to just point them in the direction of sparknotes to help them avoid the unpleasant necessity of actually having to look at a book. No, seriously, I find the same frustrations. I try to combat such approaches by setting tests on assigned chapters and deliberately including reference to quotations or close analysis of various segments that will necessitate them having to have actually read the chapters themselves. It doesn't always work, but there you go.

user profile pic

amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 2, 2011 at 7:45 AM (Answer #5)

dislike 0 like

Reading quizzes help in my class, and I take pains to ask questions that are not "right there" in the text answers, but where the student must read between the lines to answer correctly.  I also make sure that my tests and assessments are not the generalized "Cliff's Notes" questions.

In addition, my classes are largely based on Socratic seminars.  I give a short quiz before, and if the student doesn't pass (proving he/she's read), he doesn't participate--automatic "0" for the seminar.  Those who do pass, have to prepare for their particular jobs of discussion director, connector, wordsmith, summarizer, character educator, illustrator, etc.  They ask the tough questions and get down to the nitty-gritty of the piece, and I sit back and take notes on their depth, participation, and question quality.  If necessary, I interrupt to ask a question which hasn't been asked, but I try to allow them to be the teachers of each other.  It works great, and students do eventually get into it as their peers chide them for not responding or speaking.

 

user profile pic

wannam | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted May 2, 2011 at 10:28 AM (Answer #7)

dislike 0 like
I'm definitely a fan of "trick questions." I try to put several questions on each test or quiz that will show me if a student read the material or simply glanced over the spark notes. If there is a movie, I will also include a question for that; for instance, on a Romeo and Juliet quiz you might ask the student to describe Juliet's final moments. A student who has read the book will likely talk about her despair. A student who read the cliff notes will likely tell you that the friar was the last one to see her. A student who watched the movie will talk about the touching scene between Romeo and Juliet as Romeo dies in her arms. Students learn quickly that all the answers aren't available online. The ones who really want to learn and do well will read. The ones who are satisfied with C's won't, but at least they will be forced to read excerpts of the text. You might also try offering students a chance to select their own reading materials. My 11th graders had to read a classic of my choice. If they all participated and worked hard, I would let them select a novel they wanted to read and present to the class. You might also try reading aloud during class, letting students read the e-text version on a laptop or e-reader, or selecting excerpts from modern works to augment the classics. Good luck with your students. I know how frustrating it can be to try to get the kids to put down Facebook and pick up a novel.
user profile pic

moyossie | Student, Undergraduate | eNoter

Posted May 2, 2011 at 12:57 PM (Answer #8)

dislike 0 like

I'm a student of English Literature and I always see the look of frustration on my teacher's face when we get to the lesson and she seems to be the one doing all the talking. She always wonders how we're ever going to excel as a group if only two or three out of about thirty students don't read.

It's different for me because I value reading. So I don't have a problem. I just want to say that I don't think anything will ever completely work on a student who has no genuine interest in their literary texts. It's horrible, surely. But it's true to an extent.

As a teacher, it's a shame if the students can't excel. It gives the teacher a bad name, but it's not always their fault. In fact, it's not their fault. But no one sees it that way. I'm just saying as a student. It's also a shame that my teacher gives us essay questions that Sparknotes cannot answer and the students don't bother to do the work. The worst that will happen is that these students will fail woefully. It will be inevitable but the bad thing is the negative impact it has on a teacher's image.

I wish I could offer help on what to do but I don't know myself seeing as reading is like breathing for me.

Hopefully someone finds a solution here so I can share with my teacher! :)

user profile pic

ask996 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

Posted May 2, 2011 at 1:51 PM (Answer #9)

dislike 0 like

One strategy that I use is called "Stump the Teacher/Stump the Student." This requires that both teacher and students read a section of a selection in a specified amount of time. At the end of the time, the teacher closes his or her book, and for another specified amount of time the students ask context oriented questions over the reading material. The teacher can answer or allow the students to occasionally "stump" her. Students will read so that they can "stump" the teacher. Students who finished the reading will have questions, but those students who have not finished reading will continue to scan the material in order to "stump" the teacher. The process is then reversed, and the students close their books while the teacher asks them questions. This allows the teacher to control the flow and understanding, but it also models higher order thinking, as the teacher's questions should be more in depth than those of the students.

user profile pic

childele | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted May 2, 2011 at 3:04 PM (Answer #10)

dislike 0 like

I love Clairewait's ideas about read-aloud, paired reading and reciprocal reading. Those strategies are very successful in primary and middle childhood classes as well. It may help if you reflect on the types of questions you ask.  Higher order questions that bring some element of relevance to students are more successful in the encouragement of outside reading assignments.

user profile pic

Noelle Thompson | High School Teacher | eNotes Employee

Posted May 2, 2011 at 6:21 PM (Answer #11)

dislike 0 like

Sadly, I have found that the only thing that works is giving a very easy quiz every single day they have a reading assignment due.  Am I sure not to make the quizzes passable if the kid only read the summary?  *sigh*  No.  I just don't have that kind of time.  I think the time I was hit hardest with reality was when one of my regular students came up to me before class and said, "I really read every word of The Scarlet Letter, Miss.  I just have NO idea what it said.  I can't read that well."  Ah, we learn SO much in our first years of teaching.

user profile pic

moyossie | Student, Undergraduate | eNoter

Posted May 3, 2011 at 2:46 AM (Answer #12)

dislike 0 like

Sadly, I have found that the only thing that works is giving a very easy quiz every single day they have a reading assignment due.  Am I sure not to make the quizzes passable if the kid only read the summary?  *sigh*  No.  I just don't have that kind of time.  I think the time I was hit hardest with reality was when one of my regular students came up to me before class and said, "I really read every word of The Scarlet Letter, Miss.  I just have NO idea what it said.  I can't read that well."  Ah, we learn SO much in our first years of teaching.

Ha, the age old issue of not understanding a word. My class mates regularly give that excuse. They usually find problems when it comes to deciphering the language of writers like Shakespeare and Webster.

 

user profile pic

novenia | College Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 17, 2011 at 10:46 PM (Answer #13)

dislike 0 like

I think this is a worldwide problem. I have various student levels in various different classes. When it's time to get them to actually read a piece of literature work. It will become a nightmare to them, because all of my students are not first speaker of English. One approach that I can use to make them read is by getting to know them first. Personal approaches of what subjects interest them most will be the best solution. This might not work in big classes, but in small medium classes, it's effective. Sometimes I tell them about my own experience of reading literature. Getting personal, share just a little of yourself will be ok, as long as it's not too personal. When I was teaching Junior and Senior School Classes, this is not working, of course. Good Luck!

user profile pic

engtchr5 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted May 18, 2011 at 6:39 AM (Answer #14)

dislike 0 like

The read-aloud idea was especially good, and I have developed a slight modification to it: Using an audio recording of the literature in question, pause at critical moments in the story, poem, article, etc. Then ask students questions that cannot be answered strictly by listening: "What other word could be a synonym for (some word from the passage just read aloud)?" for instance. The student is then encouraged to go back, look more closely at the word in question, and analyze. This forces students to both visually and auditorially process the text instead of relying strictly upon "lit by ear."  

user profile pic

ladyvols1 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted May 28, 2011 at 1:49 PM (Answer #16)

dislike 0 like

I teach students with Specific Learning disabilities in Reading.  My students read and they listen to novels.  The audio book is an excellent way to introduce non-readers to the classics and by telling them to listen to the story as well as follow along in their books works well.  All of my Special needs freshmen passed their standardized testing this year and that is partly because I am not hung up on how they "read."  Another way to get high school students to read is supply reading materials they will enjoy.  My classroom is full of novels about vampires, werewolves, witches and wizards.  I read them first and if I find it acceptable (no porn or sexually explicit material) I put them in my classroom. I have also found magazine about cars, hunting, and guns are good starting points to jump from to books.  Ellen Hopkins is a good example of an author that teens love.  My students love the whole series.

user profile pic

literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted June 2, 2011 at 4:09 AM (Answer #17)

dislike 0 like

I received the same response from many of my juniors and seniors as post #1 (haven't read anything since middle school).  This is very upsetting given that this is basically saying they have failed to complete any reading assignments for a long time.  I actually had many students admit to me that this was the first year they have opened a novel in years.  I had them read Speak, Monster, Catcher in the Rye, and Of Mice and Men. I guess it simply depends on what you are planning on having them read.  Too many of them cannot relate to the novels we would like to have them read. What I have found is finding novels that teach the same concepts as the classics is much more negotiable for the students.  So, my advice is to try and find current novels that they can relate to and that will spark their interest.

user profile pic

bryansuharly | Student, Undergraduate | eNoter

Posted June 2, 2011 at 7:22 AM (Answer #18)

dislike 0 like

I believe you have to foster a lifelong "love of learning". This means not only encouraging reading for academic purposes, but also for pleasure. If one only reads for class projects, then they begin to assosciate it with the negative feelings they have for studying (at least that is what I myself have gone through).

Maybe allowing students to pick their own books for book reports? I know many teachers like to follow curriculum, but obviously something isn't working.

user profile pic

efguth | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted June 4, 2011 at 1:18 AM (Answer #19)

dislike 0 like

I agree that this is a major challenge. I've had various levels of success with these strategies. I try to find "high interest level" books for my students. I've had great success with "The Hunger Games" and "Tears of a Tiger." I try to give students questions where they have to make evaluations or explain the motivations of the characters. It also helps sometimes if the work you are teaching has a movie. I always explain that the work we are reading is the main focus, but that a movie can support the students' reading and act as a motivator. But the teacher has to be careful to include questions on tests or quizzes that cannot be answered solely by viewing the movie. For example, in To Kill a Mockingbird the movie does not even show the old woman who wants to break her addiction to morphine before she dies, yet she is important is the book for Atticus as "the bravest person I've ever known"

user profile pic

krcavnar | High School Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted June 4, 2011 at 11:55 PM (Answer #20)

dislike 0 like

I am finding the same issues in all of my classes - students haven't been required to read anything in years.  I teach social studies and due to so many requirements from testing I don't have enough time for the students to read in depth historical novels that I was required to read.  I have decided that we are going to read 50% more next year than this past year.  I am considering even using some graphic novels for certain thematic units -- for instance V for Vendetta and totalitarianism. As a historian I find that literature is a valuable way for students to grasp the social norms and feelings of the time -- it is a much more effective method than simply pushing textbook renditions of facts.

user profile pic

pixiedust925 | Student, Undergraduate | eNoter

Posted June 14, 2011 at 3:38 AM (Answer #22)

dislike 0 like

Go online and see the summaries that are available on the book that you are doing. Make a point on not to make homework assignments or tests that can be answered by using or reviewing the content of these sites. I am a student, but I was in an AP class and it was packed with motivated students. But I have also been in a regular class and they are the ones more likely to use outside sources. But then again just because you are in an AP class doesn't mean you are better than all the other english students out there.

I think the people with willpower and motivation can pass.

 

user profile pic

mnbv1234511 | Student, Grade 10 | eNoter

Posted June 14, 2011 at 9:40 AM (Answer #23)

dislike 0 like

Get only a couple to read it and then usually if they find it interesting they recommend it to the others. this makes them curious and they may even end up liking to read. It also depends on the kinds of students you have. My english teacher is lucky. she got most students in my class to like literature, but because we are they best generation in our school and we are more willing to try and do good. in middle school and high, our class year has had the best scores and has students that really care early on. Try to get a few to be like this and they could pass it on to the rest. class of 2013 has the best scores in Pasadena, compared to both the older and younger classes. But it is cause the students care. If the students don't care you won't get anything out of them, just more hat towards reading.

user profile pic

booboosmoosh | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator Emeritus

Posted June 18, 2011 at 5:38 AM (Answer #26)

dislike 0 like

My daughter's English teachers lets student read in groups. They have to complete activities that reflect what they have read, put together and PowerPoint and then present the book to the class. They are responsible to coming up with discussion questions and discussing them in front of the class as well. In this way, even if everyone doesn't read the entire book, they generally complete some of the reading. There is pressure to may sure that everyone contributes something: the rest of the group doesn't want to carry anyone. The rest of the class hears about a book they may want to read, and the activity becomes student-centered rather than teacher-centered. Giving students a choice of the book and who they want to work with is more appealing to the kids than reading on their own, and they also get to work with these students they have chosen, whereby they might not otherwise have the chance to interact with their peers as much.

user profile pic

twestbye | Middle School Teacher | eNoter

Posted June 20, 2011 at 9:10 AM (Answer #27)

dislike 0 like

Student interest is a huge motivator. Many times, they are assigned a text with no choice in the matter. If possible, offer choices for a text, so they accept some ownership.

As the teacher or facilitator, you need to determine what you want them to learn or understand from a story. If your classroom activities or discussions stay at comprehension level of plotline, then the summary online really IS all they will need.

If you want them to see the writer's craft in description of setting, then they will have to recognize the word choice the author uses. If you want them to prove character traits at the beginning or end of a story, they will have to find text evidence. Include role playing, or mock-interviews, something indepth. Involved with activities that engage conversation, they may get into the story as they start reading, so allow some time in class, where actual reading cannot be avoided.

There is no cover-all answer since every student is so different, but I hope these ideas help some.

user profile pic

lsumner | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

Posted June 21, 2011 at 1:28 AM (Answer #28)

dislike 0 like

I have learned that the best way to get students to read is to first break down the story. I share suspenseful parts of the story to capture my students' attention. Then, I share highlights of certain passages. By this point, the students are better prepared to actually, word-for-word, read. The next approach is to play a CD with the entire story so that the students can read along. I offer Class Participation points for those who are actually reading. In works like The Iliad, this is a good way to get the students familiar with the complex text. Finally, after reading, I give points for those who break down the complex text (specific passages) and rewrite it modern-day English. This helps my ESL students. In fact, I allow them to break down the text in their native language. Students will retain most of the story this way.

user profile pic

y2kfain | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Adjunct Educator

Posted June 21, 2011 at 7:37 AM (Answer #29)

dislike 0 like

There are a number of wonderful strategies you can use to motivate students to read. One technique is to get students interested in the characters and theme of the story prior to reading. For example, if the lesson of the story involves "the betrayal of a valued friendship" have your students evaluate their own friendships. You can have a prompt or journal question that asks a question about friendship and/or betrayal. Then ask several students to read or discuss their journal. The teacher should respond by connecting their students' personal experiences to the lessons learned by the characters. Next, provide a brief summary to build interest in the story. You now have your students’ attention because you have built a connection between the character and the reader. Furthermore, the picture on the cover can build a connection between the main character and the reader. Students can make a prediction on the story based on the book cover or the back cover description. Having students engage in journaling, discussions, and prediction making about the characters and/or themes will provide suspense and eager readers.

user profile pic

bbehaghel | Student, Grade 11 | Valedictorian

Posted June 28, 2011 at 1:46 AM (Answer #32)

dislike 0 like

reading is the best thing a child should do... it is a way of knowing things... books are all the peoples knowledge, but they can also be fun to read. to make the child start reading, you should start reading to him out loud. this way, they know how to get interested. books should not bore them... 

user profile pic

catl | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted July 18, 2011 at 12:42 AM (Answer #52)

dislike 0 like

Im a student who used to hate reading, but now i love it. The teachers I had would ask us things we used to really like. For example, comics, shopping, cook books, non-fiction, fiction,mystery etc. So then the teacher would put us into groups. The groups were separated: you could tell they want to read, they hate reading. So the teacher would put skinny books and they kept getting thicker until they they were actually reading. He would read us funny books and suspenseful books and leave the mystery so he could leave us in suspense. Thats how I came to love reading. I read before going to bed, I read when I'm eating, in the car... all thank to that teacher.

user profile pic

lovepeacea | Student | Salutatorian

Posted August 7, 2011 at 10:36 AM (Answer #78)

dislike 0 like

You can use reverse physcoligy on them. For example, hold up a chapter book of any kind to a student that doesn't like reading. Now, if they say that they don't want to read it and they hate reading say, someone as immature as you are, like a Kindergardener would actually try to read this, and I bet you can't even read this in the miminun amount of 3 day's, and they will say 'I'm not immature and I can read this book in less than 2 days!' and they will read it:D But if He/She refuses to read it, put Him/Her in your office with homework like read a book on Charlottes web and write a book report on it and have you Mom/Dad sign it when they are finished, reverse physcoligy alway's works!! Hope this helped

user profile pic

yugsfuysg | High School Teacher | eNoter

Posted August 7, 2011 at 12:27 PM (Answer #79)

dislike 0 like

( ==== http://www.bingstore.us ==== )
Online Store,Get Name Brand Fashion From 12USD Now!
Lv,Gucci,Prada,Coach,Chanel Women sandal is $30
DG,JUICY,Lv,Gucci,Coach Hand-bag price is $35
Polo,Locaste,Levis,EdHardy,Bape,Christan Audigier AF,COOGI Tshirt price is $12
Jeans price is $34 Bikini (Ed hardy, Polo,Gucci,LV,Christan Audigier,Affliction) $15
Sunglasses (Dior, Oakey, coach, Gucci, Armaini)$16
Bikini (Ed hardy, Polo,Gucci,LV,Christan Audigier,Affliction) $15
Jersey price is $29New era cap price is$16
Accept Credit card payment ,Paypal payment, Western Union and electronic bank transfer
Free shipping.Door to Door services!
5 days arrive your home or you
ur friends’ adress by EMS,DHL,UPs
click my link under here!
( ==== http://www.bingstore.us ==== )

user profile pic

sdfgsduyf | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 18, 2011 at 10:30 PM (Answer #90)

dislike 0 like

Hello,

Send Christmas Gifts. Buy more to send. On this site==== http://www.goodshopping.us/ ,

good place for shopping, fashion, sexy, personality, maturity, from here to begin. Are you ready?

Air jordan(1-24)shoes $30

Handbags(Coach l v f e n d i d&g) $35

Tshirts (Polo ,ed hardy,lacoste) $15

Jean(True Religion,ed hardy,coogi) $30

Sunglasses(Oakey,coach,gucci,A r m a i n i) $15

New era cap $10

accept paypal or credit card and free shipping

====== http://www.goodshopping.us/ ====

user profile pic

jmc125 | High School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 27, 2011 at 8:57 AM (Answer #98)

dislike 0 like

 

1500 characters woud be a good limit for a grade school student.

 

So for 1500 characters, go take a flying f..k.

user profile pic

faheem123 | Middle School Teacher | Honors

Posted September 8, 2011 at 11:40 PM (Answer #102)

dislike 0 like

Getting them to actually read? Woah. Is that what we are supposed to be doing? I thought we were meant to just point them in the direction of sparknotes to help them avoid the unpleasant necessity of actually having to look at a book. No, seriously, I find the same frustrations. I try to combat such approaches by setting tests on assigned chapters and deliberately including reference to quotations or close analysis of various segments that will necessitate them having to have actually read the chapters themselves. It doesn't always work, but there you go.

I would have them read in class, individually and in pairs. The lost class activity time should or can be moved to homework.

user profile pic

lobobonham | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted September 15, 2011 at 1:16 PM (Answer #103)

dislike 0 like

Our teacher makes us annotate the text and look deeper into it, to make sure we read the book. It's time-consuming and a tad boring but it gets me to read the book. I'm currently reading Macbeth for English and we have to break it down. Then the day it's due we go over it and have a group discussion where you have to participate, then we take around a 10 point quiz on it. Quite effective.

user profile pic

faheem123 | Middle School Teacher | Honors

Posted September 15, 2011 at 7:54 PM (Answer #104)

dislike 0 like

Our teacher makes us annotate the text and look deeper into it, to make sure we read the book. It's time-consuming and a tad boring but it gets me to read the book. I'm currently reading Macbeth for English and we have to break it down. Then the day it's due we go over it and have a group discussion where you have to participate, then we take around a 10 point quiz on it. Quite effective.

Does your teacher also ask you to paraphrase the text into modern English? If so, does that help to understand the meanings mre clearly, and does it also help with remembering (recalling) the more imporant passages / quotes?

user profile pic

pirateteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted October 1, 2011 at 9:52 PM (Answer #105)

dislike 0 like

The AP teachers at our school have students annotate their texts.  This is a great way to have them practice looking for and analyzing the rhetorical devices found in the text, but has also given us a higher success rate of students reading.  Some still search for answers online or randomly highlight, but we know they're not putting in the time when we grade their annotations.  It usually only takes one or two low grades on the annotations before they realize they're going to have to read.  It also helps that our class focuses less on the plot points of the text and more on the langugae aspects of the text.  Sure, some of these devices can be googled or posted here as questions, but rarely can they find all the devices for all the chapters (with explanations in their own high school vocabularies) online.

user profile pic

arrellbelle | Student, College Sophomore | Valedictorian

Posted July 28, 2014 at 5:05 PM (Answer #106)

dislike 0 like

As a student myself, I am witness to this everyday, but most students actually have a good reason as to not reading, since a lot of them probably take care of their own families, they have to work a couple of hours everyday, they also have other classes to take care of and it's a very crucial moment for teenagers and young adults because we are forcing so much down their throats. The best way to help a student is to not get upset at them, but to benefit everyone in your class by reading to them and reading with them during class hours. Set aside an amount of time to read with them and this helps for students to get an opportunity to ask questions or collaborate with you or other students.

user profile pic

udonbutterfly | Student, College Freshman | Valedictorian

Posted August 14, 2014 at 12:44 AM (Answer #107)

dislike 0 like

I think the best solution would be to incorporate a 15 minutes of out loud reading from a good book that is popular among that age range. If you do 15 minutes of silent reading with a book of their choice it I do not think it will work to well. Some kids will try to doze off in the that little frame of 15 minutes while others might only be staring at the page counting till time is up. So choose an interesting book for the entire class and do popcorn reading or selected out loud reading for the first 15 minutes or so for class.

user profile pic

atyourservice | Student, Grade 10 | Valedictorian

Posted August 15, 2014 at 2:56 PM (Answer #108)

dislike 0 like

Make the students read in class. When my english teacher starts a book she usually makes all the students read together in class. And in order to make sure we were paying attention she would ask questions that can be answered by just paying attention.

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes