Improving Reading Comprehension

What else can we do to improve Reading Comprehension?

Following many teachers' requests, I have decided to bring a few more examples on Reading Comprehension as a process. The objective is: Improving Reading Comprehension.

I will bring two texts dealing with different aspects of a certain subject. From text to text we will accumulate information and enrich our understanding of the text since reading is strongly influenced by prior knowledge.

Our general subject is Communication Devices.

Introducing Text No.1

Let's start with an Oral Activity

Look at the following cartoon. 

(Click on the link below: mobile phone.)

mobile phone  

Describe the cartoon.

  • Where does the scene take place? Explain your answer.
  • In what way is one of the characters different from the others? Explain.
  • What is the expression on the people's faces? Can you explain?
  • Does anybody seem out of place? Why?

Developing class discussion based on the cartoon.

  • Have you ever been in a similar situation? Tell the class about it.
  • Do you think the use of cellular phones should be forbidden in public places? Why?
  • Why is it dangerous to use the mobile phone while driving?
  • Why has the mobile phone become a problematic issue in the army?
  • Some say that the smartphone has become a symbol of status. Discuss.

Text No.1

The mobile phone, also known as the cellular phone, is becoming more and more popular from day to day not only among adults but among very young children as well. Years ago, it was so rare that people used to stare when they saw somebody talking on the phone while walking on the street or lying on the beach.

No question about it: The mobile phone has brought about a revolution in communication. The advantages are obvious, mainly in cases of emergency. Instead of looking for a public phone only to find that it is probably out of order or that you have used up your telecard, you pick up the mobile phone, dial the number required and help is on its way. Actually, public phones and telecards are slowly disappearing and many people think that they have become obsolete due to the popularity of cell phones.

There are some disadvantages, however. Using the mobile phone while driving is dangerous. Its use in the army is a problematic issue. In general, using the mobile phone when it is not absolutely necessary may be very annoying. Imagine somebody answering a call in the middle of a concert (see cartoon at the top of this post). People sitting next to that person might not be too enthusiastic about this technological revolution.

Working on the text

  • Read the text carefully.
  • Find the main idea of every paragraph.
  • Can you sum up the text in three sentences?
  • Choose a suitable title for the text.

Writing  Activities
1. Complete the following sentences according to the text.

  • It is dangerous …
  • Many children …
  • Cellphones are so popular that …
  • The people in the audience will probably …
  • In the past, …
  • Today, it is very hard to find …
  • If you answer the phone during a concert, …

2. Rearrange the sentences that you have just completed in chronological order according to the passage.

Homework Assignments

  • Draw a chart of two columns. Write Advantages and Disadvantages of cell phones at the top of each column. Write at least 5 items in each column.
  • Write three or four paragraphs on one of the following subjects:
    Are many people addicted to their cellular phones? Why is it a problem? What can be done about it?
    In what way are smartphones much better than the simple mobile phones? Explain.


And that's all for today. More texts and suggestions in my next post.

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