Guided Reading - Sample Comprehension Lesson

This lesson supports students in listening for the purpose of listing settings. The book is 'Pizza Places' from the RAPS CD by Caroline Musselwhite (
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Importance of Building Background Knowledge

Check out this video link from the Edmonton Regional Learning Consortium. In it, Dr. Musselwhite talks about the importance of building background knowledge for a book, relative to the purpose that day.

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Building Background Knowledge Video

Developing Early Literacy: Report of the National Early Literacy Panel
A Scientific Synthesis of Early Literacy Development and Implications for Intervention 2008

  • Chapter 4: Impact of Shared-Reading Interventions on Young Children’s Early Literacy Skills
Overall, the evidence supports the positive impact of shared-reading interventions that are more intensive in frequency and interactive in style on the oral language and print knowledge skills of young children.

Predictable Books

Predictable books use repetitive language and/or sequences, rhythms, and rhymes. Predictable books allow early readers to predict what the sentences are going to say, thereby increasing enjoyment and helping to build vocabulary and memory skills. There are various types of predictable books:
  • Chain or Circular Story: The story's ending leads back to the beginning.
  • Cumulative Sequence: The story builds on a pattern. It starts with one person, place, thing, or event. Each time a new person, place, thing, or event is shown, all the previous ones are repeated. Example: The Gingerbread Man.
  • Familiar or Known Sequence: A common, recognizable theme such as the days of the week, the months, etc. Example: The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.
  • Pattern Stories: The scenes or episodes are repeated with a variation.
  • Question and Answer: A question is repeated throughout the story. Example: Brown Bear, Brown, Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin, Jr.
  • Repetition of Phrase/Sentence: As its name implies, a phrase or sentence is repeated.
  • Repetition of Rhymes/Rhythms: A rhyme, refrain, or rhythm is repeated throughout the story.
  • Songs: Familiar songs with repeated phrases, sentences, rhymes, or refrains.
Find examples of each at this website:

Repeated Lines

This Tip of the Month 2011 from shares some of our favorites circa 1999. It also includes notes about themes and favorites for preschool.

repeated line books.pdf

An updated list by author was also found on this page of 101 Ideas for Literacy and AAC

Read It Once Again / Saltillo
Saltillo has collaborated with Read It Once Again to bring you downloadable story-based curriculum and corresponding vocabulary to help develop communication and literacy skills. Read It Once Again preschool curriculums use the story itself as the theme of the unit to promote early literacy. They furnish the teacher with objectives, activities, and assessments necessary to provide young children with firm basic foundational skills in an educational program which will meet their basic needs in each of the five domains commonly addressed in the early childhood classroom. These units are very effective for young children who have language processing disorders, developmental delays and forms of autism. Each unit has activity-specific pages to download for recipes and songs. Other lessons teach how to use core and supplemental vocabulary pages already programmed in your NovaChat device, using: MultiChat 15 Student, ChatPower 24, ChatPower 24 w/ Phrases, ChatPower 30, ChatPower 42 basic, ChatPower 42, ChatPower 48, ChatPower 80.

Dialogic Reading -- Grover J. (Russ) Whitehurst (1992)

Children learn most from books when they are actively involved. In dialogic reading, the adult helps the child become the teller of the story. The fundamental reading technique in dialogic reading is the PEER sequence. This is a short interaction between a child and the adult. The adult:
Prompts the child to say something about the book,
Evaluates the child's response,
Expands the child's response by rephrasing and adding information to it, and
Repeats the prompt to make sure the child has learned from the expansion.

Posted by Caroline Musselwhite March 7, 2011

Follow the CAR: Learn It / See It

The CAR strategy (NotariSyverson, Maddox, and Cole, 1999) encourages adults to support students during shared reading by ‘following the car’:
• Comment on what the student is doing (then wait 5 seconds)
• Ask questions (then wait 5 seconds)
• Respond by adding more
That strategy is equally successful for older students who are building their interactive language, to support communication and literacy.
For more information about the CAR strategy, follow this link:

The Deaf-Blind Model Classroom Project

Through a contract with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, North Carolina Deafblind Project, the Center for Literacy and Disability Studies is working with selected school sites and individual students to identify and implement exemplary practices in literacy and communication for students who have been identified with deaf-blindness. You can find great resources as well as case studies. This website includes a downloadable PDF for a Shared Reading Visitor Observation Form and Shared Reading Checklist

Posted by Deanna on 3/20/11:During the ASHA online webinar Language and Literacy in Preschool Children, Joan Kaderavek, PhD, University of Toledo presented on Children's Motivation and Engagement in Early Literacy Learning. She indicated that levels of engagement were predictors of literacy learning success. Using the resources below, she described the following levels of engagement:
1. Non-engagement
  • Inappropriate behavior and/or not participating (not oriented to the activity)
2. Unsophisticated Levels of engagement
  • Casually looking around/easily distracted
3. Adequate/Average Engagement
  • Engaged most of the time, some distraction
  • Is not consistently “affectively engaged” in the story
4. High Engagement
  • Participating, persisting, clear emotional affect and anticipation in response to story
  • May not include verbal participation

  1. The Children’s Orientation to Book Reading (C.O.B.) rating scale is designed to evaluate children’s level of orientation (i.e., interest, engagement, and focus of attention) during adult-child shared book reading (Kaderavek & Hunt, 2009). Available from author: Mail Stop 954, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH 43606.
  2. The STARE: The Scale for Teachers' Assessment of Routines Engagement by Amy M. Casey and R.A. McWilliam, Young Exceptional Children, October 2007. Available on-line at