25 Reading Strategies That Work In Every Content Area

25 Reading Strategies That Work In Every Content Area

Reading is reading. By understanding that letters make sounds, we can blend those sounds together to make whole sounds that symbolize meaning we can all exchange with one another.

Without getting too Platonic about it all, reading doesn’t change simply because you’re reading a text from another content area. Only sometimes it does.

Science content can often by full of jargon, research citations, and odd text features.

Social Studies content can be an interesting mix of itemized information, and traditional paragraphs/imagery.

Literature? Well, that depends on if you mean the flexible form of poetry, the enduring structure of a novel, or emerging digital literature that combines multiple modalities to tell a story. (Inanimate Alice, for example.)

This all makes reading strategies somewhat content area specific. Stopping (maybe the most undervalued strategy ever) and Rereading might make more sense in science, while Visualization and Text Connections may make more sense reading literary works. Questioning the Text may make equal sense in both.

But if you’d like to start with a basic set of strategies, you could do worse than the elegant graphic above from wiki-teacher.com. (Useful site, by the way.) It lists 12 basic reading comprehension strategies, to which we’ve added 13 for a full fourth of a hundred.

Looking for related curricula ideas? Check out our Reading Comprehension Strategy Resources

25 Reading Strategies That Work In Every Content Area

1. Reread

2. Activate Prior Knowledge

3. Use Context Clues

4. Infer

5. Think Aloud

6. Summarize

7. Locate Key Words

8. Make Predictions

9. Use Word Attack Strategies

10. Visualize

11. Use Graphic Organizers

12. Evaluate Understanding

To the above list, we’d add:

13. Question the Text

14. Stop!

15. Monitor & Repair Understanding (While Reading)

16. Paraphrase

17. Annotate the Text

18. Adjust Reading Rate

19. Prioritize Information

20. Use Graphic Notetaking

21. Predict

22. Set a Reader Purpose

23. Text-connections (text-to-self, text-to-text, text-to-world)

24. Skim

25. SSQ (Stop, Summarize, Question)

We’ll gather these and put them in a Before Reading, During Reading, and After Reading matrix soon. Only because we like you.

See Also: 25 Self-Guided Reading Responses For Fiction And Non-Fiction

25 Reading Strategies That Work In Every Content Area