Target Reading Rate with Closed Captioning

Reading

Target Reading Rate with Closed Captioning

Posted on October 23, 2009

Target Reading Rate with Closed Captioning

Closed Captioning

Reading fluency is a huge component to increasing comprehension. If students spend too much energy decoding the words, they can't focus on what the words mean. If students read too slowly, they will never make sense of the text. Fluency is something most primary teachers target naturally. However, intermediate and middle school language arts teachers need to have regular elements of fluency in their curriculum, too. (It's not just about reading to learn; some students are still learning to read in the upper grades.)

Reading captionsThat said, a short and simple activity that could target reading rate would be to turn on your classroom television and adjust the settings to activate "closed captioning." Force students to read the show/newscast/movie rather than listen to it. Then, after several minutes, have a discussion or even a short Q&A. Check for comprehension. NOTE: Remember, the goal isn't to just read faster. It's to read faster in order to comprehend.

Encourage the use of closed captioning when watching television. Students (and their parents) should mute the characters and follow the plot by reading the closed captions. This type of reading requires them to read quickly as the text changes rapidly. They must use their fluency skills to maintain comprehension. This is something that can be done year round. For an extra challenge, allow students to watch and listen. Ask students to notice when the closed captioning doesn't include all the text spoken out loud.