Do I Really Have to Teach Reading?

  • Title:Do I Really Have to Teach Reading?: Content Comprehension, Grades 6-12
  • Author:Cris Tovani
  • Publication Date:January 2004
  • Grade Level:6-12
  • ISBN:9781571103765
  • Publisher:Stenhouse

“Do I really have to teach reading?” This is the question many teachers of adolescents are asking, wondering how they can possibly add a new element to an already overloaded curriculum. And most are finding that the answer is “yes.” If they want their students to learn complex new concepts in different disciplines, they often have to help their students become better readers.

Building on the experiences gained in her own language arts classroom as well as those of colleagues in different disciplines, Cris Tovani, author of I Read It, but I Don't Get It, takes on the challenge of helping students apply reading comprehension strategies in any subject. In Do I Really Have to Teach Reading?, Cris shows how teachers can expand on their content expertise to provide instruction students need to understand specific technical and narrative texts. The book includes:

  • examples of how teachers can model their reading process for students;
  • ideas for supplementing and enhancing the use of required textbooks;
  • detailed descriptions of specific strategies taught in context;
  • stories from different high school classrooms to show how reading instruction varies according to content;
  • samples of student work, including both struggling readers and college-bound seniors;
  • a variety of “comprehension constructors”: guides designed to help students recognize and capture their thinking in writing while reading;
  • guidance on assessing students;
  • tips for balancing content and reading instruction.

Cris's humor, honesty, and willingness to share her own struggles as a teacher make this a unique take on content reading instruction that will be valuable to reading teachers as well as content specialists.


Author Bio

Cris Tovani has taught grades 1-12 in the Cherry Creek School District for the past twenty-seven years. In addition to teaching and coaching full time, she is a nationally known consultant focusing on content comprehension, assessment, and the creation of systemic change through Literacy Labs, a site Cris created with Sam Bennett to help teachers learn how to create and sustain lab classrooms. She is the author of several books and DVDs including: Do I Really Have to Teach Reading? So What Do They Really Know? and Comprehending Content

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