Discuss how approaches to problem solving can be used as a way to improve reading comprehension in students as referenced in your text

Expert Answers
Kristen Lentz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Students at any reading ability level definitely need to be coached on how to problem solve and think critically as active readers in order to improve overall reading comprehension.  Overall reading comprehension ability stems from several factors:  vocabulary level, recall and memory, reader background knowledge, fluency, motivation, and knowledge of reading comprehension strategies.  Active readers who employ a variety of problem solving skills and metacognitive strategies are going to come away from a passage with a deeper understanding and comprehension than passive readers who merely read the text. 

Some problem solving strategies in terms of reading comprehension are: looking at the title and making predictions, activating and reflecting on prior knowledge before reading the text, making connections between the text and their own personal experiences, drawing inferences while reading each paragraph or section, noting important literary devices like symbolism or metaphors, and making note of important questions or challenges that the text may raise. 

One successful way to encourage students to be more active problem solvers with their reading is to coach them how to annotate (actively marking, highlighting, and note-taking) the reading passage.  Even basic annotation can help students stay more focused on the text and task at hand and be more actively trouble-shooting to help improve their own metacognitive process while reading.