Wednesday, September 28, 2011
Three Reading Levels
A second level is the instructional reading level, which students should be able to read most of, but occasionally need a teacher or someone else around to help with new words, or mispronunciations. This level of reading usually produces the most learning and "growth" for the students because it pushes them just a little beyond their comfort zone.
The third level is called the frustration reading level -- what I consider "red light reading". This level is too difficult for students, even with help and guidance, and Gipe calls this the "groan zone". This is when students start squirming, crying, misbehaving, or just stop enjoying reading.
Ideally, teachers would know what these levels are for each student, and push them to the growth zone as often as possible.
This concept reminded of weightlifting -- which believe it or not, I have done. In weight lifting, while it might be fun to spend all your time with green weights, you will not grow if you don't push yourself to try harder weights. Of course, if you are not aware of your limits, you can cause significant damage by attempting to lift weights too high for your muscles. Ideally, you want to push yourself to spend time in the yellow zone, where you are able to do multiple repetitions, yet still struggling some what, so your muscles have to break down in order to rebuild.