Thursday, March 6, 2014

Evaluating Reading and Reading Comprehension

My husband and I were putting the kids to bed last night and I was finding Alec's books all over the place.

 I'd flag him down only to have him tell me, "oh, I read that one already."

Ordinarily I wouldn't think much of it but these were new books from the library.  I quickly counted them up and asked "you read 8 books in the last two days?!"

Now, that in and of itself isn't that shocking when it comes to Alec but 6 of these were chapter books! 

My husband was very skeptical (and I'll admit I couldn't help thinking-- "really??" in my head as well) and so my husband told me I needed to ask him about the stories to see if he was really reading them.



I told my husband that if he didn't believe Alec he needed to ask him himself.

Then, of course, my husband realized he had never read any of these books and he asked me "how will I know what the story is about and if he's telling me all about it or not."  "Just ask him and you'll know; if he really has read these books he will talk your ear off about them!"

Well ten or so minutes later my husband was begging Alec to stop telling him about his books and to start getting ready for bed.
     
I often have people ask how I know if my boys are really reading the book they have chosen if I never have them read aloud to me.

I have people ask how I know they understanding what they're reading if I never ask them any questions.

Here's how:

  • I listen when they talk about their books!
That's pretty much it in a nutshell!  

My boys are eager to share and tell others about good books that they're reading and when they retell they tend to use a lot of details.  When they're talking my ear off; I know they're enjoying the book, understanding the story, and really reading.

I know when my boys are really reading a book because they look engrossed in the story, they don't want to put it down and I can see their eyes and lips moving as they track words across the page.

Once all the boys were tucked in my husband turned to me and said "what other 8 year old reads 8 books in two days!  That's a lot of reading!"  

I just shrugged.  

Alec LOVES to read and these past few days I have been finding Alec in weird positions (feet on the couch and head on the floor; legs folded over his head like a pretzel, hiding under blankets, etc.) while reading book after book.  

He's a fast reader and he loves reading.  

As I sat at computer with all three kids in bed I could hear him reading out loud to all of his animals.  

He reads fast, accurately and with such unbelievable expression. He was yelling, squealing, and I could just hear him dissolving into fits of laughter.   

I knew there was no way he was skipping through these stories only reading the first few and last few chapters (like my husband suspected) because he genuinely loves the stories and can't wait to find out what will happen next. 

If I could only get my other two boy to enjoy reading half as much as Alec I'd feel like the best homeschooling mom ever!

   
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