THE POWER OF RE-READING
In an era of tantalising screen animations and instant gratification, our children are losing out on the time tested and well-proven strategy called Re-Reading.
The task becomes even harder when you consider the fact that very few children are Reading these days, forget Re-Reading!
Well, that is another topic for another day. But the advantages of Re-Reading are humongous and have far-reaching positive Learning Outcomes.
Children love repetition or alliteration.
That is one reason why we have rhymes that go Twinkle Twinkle Little Star …Row Row Row your Boat ….Mary had a Little Lamb, Little Lamb…and many more.
Repetition offers a degree of safety to young learners.
They feel they are on safe and familiar grounds. Repetition gives them a familiarity and a sense of ownership and mastery over words.
They use these repeatedly getting familiar words to learn new vocabulary and thereby become better Readers.
Benefits of Re-Reading:
- Re-Reading a text, rhyme or story makes it much clearer. The second time around Reading process gives the child a better focus and a sharper eye for detail.
- Re-Reading leads to better pronunciation. Very often children tend to ‘eat’ the words they find difficult to pronounce. Re-reading the text containing those tricky words encourages them to decipher the new words and attempt to pronounce them better during the second read
- Re-Reading gives a deeper understanding of the context of the text. When re-reading a story or a rhyme, children pay more attention to the characters, settings, costumes, vocabulary and the setting per se.
- Re-Reading has a huge advantage for the teacher/ educator. The Teacher Educator is better able to assess the Desired Outcomes of a learning task. The child is more relaxed, deliberate and comfortable. The Teacher Educator can then provide Formative assessment Remarks in a more lucid manner
- If the Rereading happens in a relaxed and stress-free environment, children can fall in love with Reading. Very often we see that children also have deadlines for their Reading tasks, in addition to facing peer scrutiny and teacher scrutiny while they read in class. Re-Reading at leisure can help in doing away with the ‘fear of reading’ syndrome.
Reading & Re-Reading can happen in a variety of settings:
- The Teacher can read a poem, story or a text piece in class and have the children do chorus reading, which in simple words means to repeat the text after her. Chorus Reading is safe since it is group Reading. The fear of being pointed out is eliminated and the children can auto-correct themselves after hearing the others speak.
- Paired Reading or Reading with a partner is also a great strategy to bring in reading fluency while nurturing collaborative skills. The Pairs or partners divide the text among themselves and read together as a team
- Theatre Style Reading is a really fun strategy to make Reading more exciting and experiential. In this strategy, the text is divided among the Readers and they do away with the ‘He said’, ‘They said’, ‘Mr Rao said’ etc. The readers focus on the delivery of words, intonation, pause and effect.
So perhaps it would be wise, to sum up Re-Reading as a second encounter with characters, plot & settings.
Several interactions between the text and the Reader is always sure to lead to fluency, deeper understanding, play with word sand can very likely lead to a lifelong happy affair with letters, words and text!