Comprehension Monitoring Strategies

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  • 0:00 Self-Monitoring
  • 0:52 Pausing
  • 1:54 Self-Questioning
  • 2:49 Self-Diagnosis
  • 3:54 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Jessica Whittemore

Jessica has taught junior high history and college seminar courses. She has a master's degree in education.

There's much more to reading than simply sounding out words. Novice readers must also learn how to self-monitor for comprehension. Today's lesson takes a look at how the use of pausing, self-questioning, and self-diagnosis can help them in this process.


When I was a kid, the words monitoring and classroom usually went together to mean someone watching to make sure none of us were giggling with friends, passing notes, or taking a peek at someone else's answers. Today, educational monitoring means way more than this. With a much more positive spin, it now usually denotes checking for learning. This is especially true when discussing reading comprehension and how young students can be taught to monitor their own progress. Rather than a teacher doing all the checking and measuring for understanding, today's schools see students charged with the job of self-evaluation. Keeping this paradigm shift in mind, today's lesson will explore some strategies beginning readers can use to monitor their own reading comprehension.


Our first strategy for helping beginning readers learn to monitor their own comprehension is to teach the value of pausing while reading. Many times, young readers steam roll along sounding out word after word, yet failing to grasp the meaning behind the words. To help them halt this habit, novice readers should be encouraged to occasionally pause at natural text breaks. Rather than running ahead to the finish line, encourage your beginning reader to take a break at the end of a paragraph or section.

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