Thursday, February 25, 2010

Continuing Comprehension Talk

Yesterday we talked about making connections with your own experiences. Today we are going to stretch it out to include connections to other books, literature, and even media they have had contact with.

These days, it is very common to have kids pick up books based upon the fact that they have seen the trailer for a new movie based on that book. Now, many of you, like myself, make your kids read the book (or read it to them) before they see the movie, but sometimes you have the reverse too.

It is also very common, if they have seen the movie, for them to read the entire book and simply be playing the movie in their heads. What do I mean? Well, we know that many times, movies are different from the books - sometimes drastically. Take Charlie and the Chocolate Factory -- bubble room? None existed.

Many times, young readers, in their passion to read what's the "cool" thing, will miss the fact that the book is different. I even appreciate when they say "That's not like the movie" because it means they are paying attention and noticing the changes.

But I stray from my initial point.

I have no problem with kids seeing movies based on books. It is fun for them to see how animators/directors interpret the books and put it on screen. But I talk to my kids about it too. We talk about the pictures they saw in their heads while reading, and compare them to the screen/tv images.

Ok, but as for connections. Sometimes, they have read another book where a similar event happens, a character does something similar to another from a different book, or even vocabulary words show up.

Perfect example...I was reading with A on Weds. and we were reading MUNCHA! MUNCHA! MUNCHA! by Candace Fleming. In the book, we encountered the word "gnawing" -- we talked about it and she found clues in the pictures and the sentences to help her figure out the meaning. But she still had trouble sounding it out -- gn is a toughie. So I told her the word and we moved on. Later, and TOTALLY UNPLANNED by me (I love it when things simply fall in my lap!), we were reading the newest Katie Kazoo, and in the first chapter, the squirrels were "gnawing" on the trees...She looked at me with huge eyes and said "There it is again! And I know what it means!"

That is connection. Bringing ideas, words, themes from other books and media, and using them to help build your comprehension of the new material.

So today, make connections with other books...

One more month and Nicholas will officially be in the "terrible (although treasured) twos!"

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