All Background Knowledge articles

By: Reading Rockets

Give your child lots of opportunities to read aloud. Inspire your young reader to practice every day! The tips below offer some fun ways you can help your child become a happy and confident reader. Try a new tip each week. See what works best for your child.

By: Reading Rockets

Play with letters, words, and sounds! Having fun with language helps your child learn to crack the code of reading. The tips below offersome fun ways you can help your child become a happy andconfident reader. Try a new tip each week. See what works best foryour child.

By: Reading Rockets

Read about it, talk about it, and think about it! Find ways for yourchild to build understanding, the ultimate goal of learning how toread. The tips below offer some fun ways you can help your childbecome a happy and confident reader. Try a new tip each week. Seewhat works best for your child.

By: Student Achievement Partners

Improve instruction and help all students achieve at high levels by making these research-based adjustments to your balanced literacy program. This guidance outlines some of the most common challenges of a balanced literacy model, how they can impede students’ learning, and how you can adapt your reading program to better serve students.

By: Melissa Stewart

It’s a great time for children’s nonfiction! In recent years, these books have evolved into five distinct categories. Learn more about the characteristics of traditional nonfiction, browse-able nonfiction, narrative nonfiction, expository literature, and active nonfiction.

By: Deborah K. Reed, Iowa Reading Research Center

By actively and independently reading text, students simultaneously can build their word identification, fluency, vocabulary, and text-dependent comprehension skills. Learn about three key steps teachers can take to help students experience success with independent active reading.

By: Susan Neuman, Tanya Kaefer, Ashley Pinkham

To comprehend a story or text, young readers need a threshold of knowledge about the topic, and tougher state standards place increasing demands on children's prior knowledge. This article offers practical classroom strategies to build background knowledge such as using contrasts and comparisons and encouraging topic-focused wide reading.

By: Reading Rockets

Our interconnected and digital world demands a lot of our learners. Here are five simple ways to help build your child's critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

By: Reading Rockets

Children's author and historian Marc Aronson discusses the importance of reading nonfiction in developing critical thinking skills.

By: Barbara Marinak, Linda Gambrell

Exposing young children to informational text early on can help them to handle the literacy demands of fourth grade and beyond. Practical instructional techniques can be used to promote understanding and enjoyment of informational texts. The three techniques described here — Text Impression, Guiding Questions, and the Retelling Pyramid — can help children become familiar with the language and structure of non-fiction books.

By: Reading Rockets

Day trips, vacations and special outings create special memories and great learning opportunities for families. Here are a few "stops" to make before your visit to help your child get the most out of a family or school educational experience.

By: Kristina Robertson

As you teach content areas to ELLs of diverse backgrounds, you may find that they struggle to grasp the content, and that they approach the content from very different perspectives. Drawing on your students' background knowledge and experiences can be an effective way to bridge those gaps and make content more accessible. This article offers a number of suggestions to classroom teachers as they find ways to tap into the background knowledge that students bring with them.

By: Reading Rockets

Children are full of questions about the world around them, and summer is a perfect time to tap into your child's interests. Here are some ways to start a journey of discovery together.

By: Kristina Robertson

As you teach content areas to ELLs of diverse backgrounds, you may find that they struggle to grasp the content, and that they approach the content from very different perspectives. Drawing on your students' background knowledge and experiences, can be an effective way to bridge those gaps and to make the content more accessible. This article offers a number of suggestions to classroom teachers as they find ways to tap into the background knowledge that students bring with them.

By: Reading Rockets

Interesting experiences give kids a broader framework for new information they might encounter in books, and when kids have lots of experiences to draw on, they have a better chance of making a connection with what they read! Help your child build background knowledge this summer with these activities.

By: Reading Rockets

Most words in a child's vocabulary come from everyday encounters with language. Children pick up language from books, media, and conversations with the people in their lives. Here are some ways you can increase your child's vocabulary and background knowledge, and strengthen the foundation for their reading success.

By: Daniel T. Willingham

Knowledge does much more than just help students hone their thinking skills: It actually makes learning easier. Knowledge is not only cumulative, it grows exponentially. Those with a rich base of factual knowledge find it easier to learn more — the rich get richer.

By: Daniel T. Willingham

Learning happens when we connect new information to what we already know. When children have limited knowledge about the world, they have a smaller capacity to learn more about it. Here are four ways teachers can build content knowledge that will expand the opportunity for students to forge new connections — and make them better independent readers and learners.

By: Texas Education Agency

How can classroom reading instruction help poor readers — indeed, all students — become more like good readers? Research suggests that the answer may lie in providing students with instruction that both teaches them the comprehension strategies that work so well for good readers and helps them to develop the necessary metacognitive awareness of how and when to use these strategies.

By: Texas Education Agency

Based on research and effective practice, these strategies help students learn how to coordinate and use a set of key comprehension techniques before, during, and after they read a variety of texts.

By: Judith Gold, Akimi Gibson

Children learn when they make connections between what they hear and what they know. One method parents can use to help make these connections is called a think aloud, where you talk through your thoughts as you read.

By: Bernice Cullinan, Brod Bagert

The following is intended to help you become a parent who is great at reading with your child. You'll find ideas and activities to enrich this precious time together.

By: Timothy Shanahan

Much vocabulary is learned without formal teaching. We gain words from conversation, observation, television/media, and reading. However, research shows that explicitly teaching vocabulary can measurably improve reading comprehension — if we teach the right words well enough. Here are five key principles to effective vocabulary instruction.

By: Susan Burns, Peg Griffin, Catherine Snow

Three main accomplishments characterize good readers. Find out what these accomplishments are, and what experiences in the early years lay the groundwork for attaining them.

"The things I want to know are in books. My best friend is the man who'll get me a book I [haven't] read." — Abraham Lincoln