Recent Posts

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Reading Strategies Archive

At the Florida Online Reading Professional Development site you'll find an excellent archive of Reading Strategies of the Month. If you're looking for ways to put thinking into action, this site is worth a visit. (NOTE: the original link was no longer working, so I replaced it with a link to similar activities while I continue to search out the original archive. PLUS, here's a similar collection from West Virginia. You can also search out individual archives of the strategies originally posted by Florida).

In addition to some familiar strategies such as Literature Circles, Word Walls, and Anticipation Guides, you'll find some less well-known approaches including Six Hat Thinking, Prediction Wheel, and the INSERT Strategy. Not only are the reading strategies described in detail, but the site also provides research findings, a rationale for each, pdf templates and examples, and links to external sites.

The Rationale for the SCAMPER strategy, for example, begins:
Looking for a new spin on an old idea?

Trying to figure out how to solve a problem by working smarter not harder?
Then the SCAMPER strategy may be the answer you are looking for to spark your own creativity, and the creativity of your students.

SCAMPER is a mnemonic acronym that provides a structured way to assist students and teachers with understanding creative problem solving and developing extension-building activities based on prior ideas and processes (Hale-Evans, 2006). First proposed by Alex Osborne in 1953, this thinking strategy was further developed by Bob Eberle and noted in his 1971 book, SCAMPER: Games for Imagination Development. Eberle states that much as the word scamper suggests “running playfully about as a child”, the strategy SCAMPER may also evoke the need “to run playfully about in one’s mind in search of ideas” (Eberle, 1984).

Why is creative problem solving useful to teach? Assisting ourselves and our students to be creative and critical thinkers are key goals of any teacher or school. Yet, you may ask, why is SCAMPER so useful? Creative problem solving strategies involve “a system, a method, a plan for dealing with perplexing situations” (Erberle, 1984). The SCAMPER technique offers a systematic and practical way to stimulate divergent thinking, imagination, originality, and intuition while scaffolding students’ creative thinking for independent use on other tasks and assignments. (Glenn, 1997)
While there, also check out the database of articles and online sources; some terrific stuff there if you enter just a couple terms for searching.

If you're looking for a ready desk reference on the topic of reading strategies, I highly recommend Strategies That Work: Teaching Comprehension for Understanding and Engagement, by Stephanie Harvey and Anne Goudvis.

You'll find lots of practical, concrete ideas to implement, no matter what your level of expertise or experience in teaching reading.


Post a Comment