The verb affix means "to fasten"; the noun form is usually applied to suffixes and prefixes collectively.
Alphabet Knowledge or Letter Knowledge
The ability to discriminate, recognize, and name the letters of the alphabet.
A reading textbook designed for a specific grade level. These usually contain material designed to enhance specific skills, such as word-attack, vocabulary, and comprehension skills, along with teacher manuals and a wealth of other teaching/reinforcement materials.
Basic Sight Word Phrases
Basic sight words grouped together in phrase units. When students learn to read these phrases quickly and smoothly, they usually transfer their ability to recognize them in context.
Basic Sight Words or Basic Sight Vocabulary
Words that appear most often in reading material written for children and adults. For students to master a basic sight word, they must recognize and pronounce the word instantly (in 1 second or less) every time they see it. One of the most common basic sight words lists is the Dolch Basic Sight Vocabulary, which contains no nouns but is a 220-word list of "service words."
Bottom-Up Model of Reading
A model that assumes the written material is the primary source of meaning, rather than the person who is reading. This model is sometimes referred to as "text-driven."
Reading done orally by two or more students from the same passage at the same time.
A reading passage of approximately 250 words in which, beginning after the first sentence, every fifth word is omitted. Students read the original passage, then fill in the exact word, if possible. Independent, instructional, and frustration levels may be calculated based on the percentage of correct words filled in.
A process of matching students to materials at their appropriate grade level. "Cloze passages" may be used to test students' comprehension of selected passages to determine placement, to teach context clues, or to teach students to better comprehend what they read.
Meaning gained from what is written on the page (when read) or heard (when spoken).
Combinations of two or three consonants blended together into sounds while retaining the sounds of the individual letters; for example, "cr" in "crayon" and "pl" in "plate".
A term referring to both "consonant blends" and "consonant digraphs".
Clues to the meaning and/or pronunciation of an unknown word derived from the words preceding or following that word. For example, one can use context clues to determine that the missing word in the following sentence is "dog": The _____ was barking all night and kept me awake.
Evaluating on the basis of the reader's experience the meaning and implications of what is read.
The process of taking words in print and changing them to spoken words. This is accomplished when the reader applies one or more of the following: sight word recognition, phonics, structural analysis, and context clues.
A careful investigation carried out to determine the amount and sequence of remediation needed by a student with reading difficulties.
A combination of two letters recording (representing) a single sound. There are "consonant digraphs" and "vowel digraphs". An example of a consonant digraph is "ph" in the word "digraph". In this case, the "ph" stands for the /f/ sound. (When a letter is found between two slash marks, as in the previous sentence, it means the sound for which the letter stands.) An example of a vowel digraph is the "ea" ion the word "each". In saying the "phoneme" (sound) represented by the letters of a digraph, one does not change the position of the mouth from the beginning to the end of the sound.
A combination of two vowel letters that are both heard in making a gliding sound; for example, "ow" in "cow" and "oy" in "boy". In pronouncing a diphthong sound, the position of the mouth is moved from the beginning to the end of the diphthong. (The word "diphthong" is pronounced: /dif/ /thong/. The consonant digraph "ph" is pronounced as /f/.)
A teaching approach that is academically focused, sequential, and structured. The teacher presents information to the students and monitors the pacing and learning of the material.
An adaptation of the neurological-impress method whereby proficient readers are paired with struggling readers to assist them as they read from one shared book.
Echo Reading or Imitative Reading
Also called imitative reading; a recommended technique for improving efficiency skills in reading. This technique can work on a one-to-one basis or with a tape recorder. Students may also use this technique when reading in pairs. The teacher reads a passage aloud; then the student attempts to duplicate the passage using the same phrasing and intonation.
Engaged Time or On-Task Time
The amount of time a student is involved or engaged int he learning task.
Explicit Phonics Instruction
Also referred to as synthetic phonics, builds from part to whole. It begins with the instruction of the letters (graphemes) with their associated sounds (phonemes). Next, explicit phonics teaches blending and building, beginning with blending the sounds into syllables and then into words. Explicit phonics is scientifically proven and research based.
Adjusting reading speed to fit the requirement of understanding the text. The purpose for reading and the type of material to be read dictate appropriate speed.
Beyond the ability to merely decode words, the ability to use punctuation and other cues to read smoothly and easily, with proper speed, accuracy, and phrasing.
General Sight Vocabulary or General Sight Words
Any word that a reader has seen many times in the past and is able to recognize instantly without using word-attack skills. This term should not be confused with the term "basic sight words", which refers only to words that appear on a list of the most frequently occurring words.
The written representation of a phoneme. For example, the word "dog" has three distinct sounds that are represented by the graphemes "d", "o", and "g". The word "straight" also has three phonemes that are represented by the graphemes "str", "aigh", and "t".
Graphic Organizers or Semantic Mapping
Graphic organizers help students focus on text structure "differences between fiction and nonfiction" as they read, provide students with tools they can use to examine and show relationships in a text, and help students write well-organized summaries of a text.
Venn-Diagrams - Used to compare or contrast information from two sources. For example, comparing two Dr. Seuss books.
Storyboard/Chain of Events - Used to order or sequence events within a text. For example, listing the steps for brushing your teeth.
Story Map - Used to chart the story structure. These can be organized into fiction and nonfiction text structures. For example, defining characters, setting, events, problem, resolution in a fiction story; however in a nonfiction story, main idea and details would be identified.
Cause/Effect - Used to illustrate the cause and effects told within a text. For example, staying in the sun too long may lead to a painful sunburn.
Hints based on sound-symbol correspondences that help readers decode and comprehend a text.
Readers identify unknown words by relating speech sounds to letters or letter patterns.
A modification of the dyad reading method to be used with groups of struggling readers. The reading material is large enough for all to see, and the teacher and students read it out loud together, with the teacher pointing to each word as it is read.
A teaching-learning approach that emphasizes the wholeness of subject matter. A completely holistic approach to teaching reading would include instruction in few or no sub-skills of reading and an emphasis on the teacher as a facilitator of learning rather than one who provides direct instruction. Also called "whole-language approach".
Informal Reading Inventory (IRI)
An authentic standards-based assessment. It is composed of a series of reading passages that begin at pre-primer level and progressively become more difficult. As a reader progresses from easier passages to more difficult ones, the examiner records, analyzes, and summarizes data that reflect the reader's application or default of standards and indicators of reading competency: prior knowledge/prediction, word recognition, fluency, and comprehension. Knowing informal reading inventory data enables classroom teachers, reading specialists, and school psychologists to make evidence-based instructional decisions and to report student progress in standards-based terms. Standardized testing does not provide such detailed, instructionally connected data.
Interactive Model of Reading
A model that describes reading as being both concept- and text-driven, in which the reader and the text work together to construct meaning. The reader comprehends through the use of both decoding skills and prior knowledge.
Kinesthetic or Tactile-Kinesthetic
The use (method) of touch, hearing, sight, and muscle movement to teach letters or words. The approach usually involves tracing over words with the index and middle fingers while sounding the part being traced.
For reading in the content areas, a direct-instruction comprehension strategy in which the teacher elicits what students "know" about the subject to be read (K), what they "want" to learn (W), and finally, what they "learned" from reading the passage (L).
Language-Experience Approach (LEA)
A system in which the student's or group's own words are written down and used as material for instruction in reading, writing, spelling, listening, and speaking. The approach relies on children's oral language background to develop their reading skills and is considered more personalized and motivating, though less systematic or sequential, than other approaches.
The relationship between a letter and the sound it represents.
Levels of Reading - Independent or Free Reading Level
The student can function adequately without the teacher's help at this level. Comprehension should average 90% or better, and word recognition should average 99% or better.
Levels of Reading - Instructional Reading Level
The student can function adequately with teacher guidance and yet be challenged to stimulate reading growth. Comprehension should average 75% or better, and word recognition should average 95% or better.
Levels of Reading - Frustration Reading Level
The student cannot function adequately. In reading at this level, the student often shows signs of tension and discomfort. Vocalization is often present. Comprehension averages 50% or less, and word recognition averages 90% or less.
Literature-Based Reading Program
A program that uses children's stories, nonfiction pieces, and poetry to teach. This may range from an in-depth study of core literary words to extension of core work together with recreational and motivational reading that is based on the student's natural curiosity.
Sometimes called simply "vocabulary"; refers to students' knowledge of the "meanings" of words in their listening, speaking, and reading vocabularies. A large and growing meaning vocabulary is critical to reading comprehension as students progress through the grades.
Knowledge of one's own thought processes while reading. This implies that students can select reading strategies that will help them to comprehend the material.
A misreading, error, or deviation from the written text that occurs while a student is reading orally. When analyzed properly, miscues can provide clues to the nature or causes of reading difficulties.
Modeling Strategies for Paragraph Meaning
An approach in which the teacher models, then directs students int he use of, a code for marking reactions to selected paragraphs. This is one of the most effective methods to teach students to improve their comprehension by monitoring their thought processes when reading.
The form and structure of words in a language, especially the consistent patterns of inflection, combination, derivation, and change, etc., that may be observed and classified.
Neurological-Impress Method (NIM)
An approach in which the teacher sits beside the student and points to each word, reading it aloud. The student follows along with her eyes and reads aloud with the teacher.
The consonant(s) at the beginning of a syllable, such as "b" in "bat" or "str" in "street". See Rime.
A standardized system for using a particular writing system (script) to write a particular language. It includes rules of spelling, and may also concern other elements of the written language such as punctuation and capitalization.
An approach in which two students read out loud, usually from the same text. The students may read simultaneously (two-person choral reading) or alternately (one student reads out loud while the other follows along silently).
Paired Repeated Readings
An approach in which paired students read the selection silently, then each reads it out loud three times while the other listens and provides assistance. The reader evaluates his performance and the listener provides a critique.
The smallest unit of speech sound in a language. For example, in the word "dog", there are three phonemes: /d/, /o/, and /g/.
Also called "phoneme awareness" or "oral phonemic segmentation"; the understanding of and the ability to manipulate phonemes. The term "phonological awareness" is also used incorrectly as a synonym for "phonemic awareness".
Initial consonants, consonant digraphs, consonant blends, vowels, vowel combinations, or special letter combinations to be learned in the study of phonics.
The application of "phoneme-grapheme" (sound-symbol) relationships to the teaching of reading; usually used in beginning reading because phonics is a helpful tool for decoding one-syllable words.
A series of letters that begin with a vowel and are often found together; for example, "all", "ell", "old", and "ime". A phonogram is sometimes referred to as a "rime", "graphemic base", "word element", "word family", "vowel family", or "graphoneme".
Awareness of the sounds that make up words, including "phonemes" (the smallest units), "onsets" and "rimes", and "syllables". Although, phonological awareness is sometimes used as a synonym for "phonemic awareness", it has a broader meaning.
A method used to help students overcome difficulties with reading fluency. A segment of a book is selected and the student is told to practice reading these sentences as accurately as possible. Later, the oral reading of the sentences is scored and the results are graphed.
The rhythm, stress, and intonation of speech. Prosody may reflect various features of the speaker or the utterance: the emotional state of the speaker; the form of the utterance (statement, question, or command); the presence of irony or sarcasm; emphasis, contrast, and focus; or other elements of language that may not be encoded by grammar or choice of vocabulary.
An approach in which students read their parts from a script in front of a group after practicing. The material read is highly motivating and not too difficult.
Reading Programs - Developmental
The classroom instructional program followed by the teacher to meet the needs of students who are progressing at a typical rate in terms of their capacity.
Reading Programs - Corrective
A program of instruction usually conducted by a classroom teacher within the class setting to correct mild reading difficulties.
Reading Program - Remedial
A program of instruction that may be carried on either inside or outside the regular classroom to teach specific reading skills to students with severe reading difficulties.
A program developed by Marie Clay for the early intervention of reading difficulties. This one-to-one instructional program is designed to help 6-year-olds overcome a slow start in reading. It is a registered trademark in the United States. Reading Recovery teachers receive extensive training prior to certification.
The vowel and all the consonants that follow the "onset" in a syllable. See Onset.
Self-Monitoring (Reading Comprehension)
Students who are good at monitoring their comprehension know when they understand what they read and when they do not. They have strategies to "fix" problems in their understanding as the problems arise. Research shows that instruction, even in the early grades, can help students become better at monitoring their comprehension.
Comprehension monitoring instruction teaches students to:
Be aware of what they do understand
Identify what they do not understand
Use appropriate strategies to resolve problems in comprehension
Semantic Feature Analysis
A technique for teaching vocabulary that uses themes, a discussion, and a matrix to expand knowledge of word meanings.
Organizing concepts into a cognitive structure or hierarchy for better comprehension.
The study of "meaning" in a language.
Shared Book Experience
Also called "shared reading", a strategy developed by Don Holdaway to provide young children in the classroom with experiences similar to those they might experience in a warm and literate environment at home. Big books are used by the teacher to help youngsters learn to read by following along as the teacher reads with enthusiasm and runs his or her hand under the words as they are read. Repetitive, familiar texts are often used. The shared book experience is a step between reading to children and independent decoding by they children.
A device used to build comprehension. It provides structure to a variety of content material. In a story frame, the teacher begins a sentence about the story's content and the student must complete the sentence. Story frames may become more elaborate and deal with character, plot, and setting as students become more skilled in completing them.
Often referred to as "morphology"; the study of meaning-bearing units such as root words, prefixes, suffixes, possessives, plurals, accent rules, and syllables. As a decoding skill, the reader uses structural analysis to decode words of more than on syllable by identifying, separating, and pronouncing reliable units or parts of words.
The separation of a word into syllables, whether spoken or written.
A metacognitive strategy in which teachers model the comprehension process by explaining how they comprehend a passage while reading it aloud.
Think-Pair-Share Reading Method
A cooperative discussion strategy developed by Frank Lyman. It gets its name from the three stages of student action, with emphasis on what students are to be DOING at each of those stages.
Think-Pair-Share Method, Stages of
Think - The teacher provokes students' thinking with a question or prompt or observation. The students should take a few moments (probably not minutes) just to THINK about the question.
Pair - Using designated partners (such as with Clock Buddies), nearby neighbors, or a deskmate, students PAIR up to talk about the answer each came up with. They compare their mental or written notes and identify the answers they think are best, most convincing, or most unique.
Share - After students talk in pairs for a few moments (again, usually not minutes), the teacher calls for pairs to SHARE their thinking with the rest of the class. She can do this by going around in round-robin fashion, calling on each pair; or she can take answers as they are called out (or as hands are raised). Often, the teacher or a designated helper will record these responses on the board or on the overhead.
Top-Down Model of Reading
A model that assumes the person who is reading is the primary source of meaning, rather than the written material. This model is sometimes referred to as concept driven.
Most often, and most appropriately, this term is synonymous with "meaning vocabulary". Sometimes it is used to refer to the number of words a reader recognizes, or the reader's "sight vocabulary".
Reading and writing instruction that uses complete texts in communicative situations, as contrasted with focused skills practice or the use of phonics or isolated drilling of language. This philosophy or approach to reading/language instruction may also incorporate speaking, listening, and spelling, and may use materials such as newspapers, children's books, notes, and memos. It usually deemphasizes grouping by ability and teacher-directed instruction.
Sometimes called "word-attack skills", the skills a reader must use to determine how to pronounce a word when it is not recognized instantly. The three important word-analysis skills are phonics, structural analysis, and context clues.
Skills needed to be able to make sense of an unknown word in the context of reading. Word attack skills rely on the ability to recognize the sounds that make up words and to put those sounds together (phonemic awareness). More advanced word attack skills involve using context, prefixes or suffixes or a dictionary to determine what a word means.
The ability to match words printed on a page to spoken words. This concept applies to both reading and writing tasks as children gradually learn to relate spoken words to written words.
Children who perform word-by-word matching while writing, create (through either invented or conventional spelling) complete messages on paper with proper spacing between words. The child understands that what is spoken also can be written down. This matching emerges gradually, and the child's control often fluctuates.
A group of words that share a common base, to which different prefixes and suffixes are added.
The ability of a reader to recognize words; usually refers only to recognition by sight or recognition without the aid of word analysis.
The integration of phonics, spelling, and vocabulary instruction. Word study teaches students how to look closely at words to discover the regularities and conventions of English orthography, or spelling. It takes the place of traditional spelling and vocabulary approaches, such as skill
instruction, scope and sequence, or repeated practice.