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Wide Reading: Definition, Purpose & Implementation Strategies

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  • 0:04 What Is Wide Reading?
  • 0:44 Wide Reading Strategies
  • 2:58 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Jaclyn Scotto

Jaclyn is a high school English teacher and college professor. She has a doctorate in Education.

Encouraging students to read both in school and at home can benefit them greatly. Wide reading is a strategy to help increase students' reading time. Read on to learn about how wide reading can be implemented in your classroom.

What Is Wide Reading?

Think about your own experience with reading while in school. Did you read a lot or a little? Did most of your reading take place in school or at home? As a teacher, you know that reading benefits students of all ages. Students who read more become better readers and researchers, improve their vocabulary, appreciate reading and learning, and become educated on multiple topics of interest.

The concept of wide reading suggests that every student should engage in at least two hours of reading a day. This can occur at school and/or at home. By engaging in wide reading, students get into a routine of reading that will follow them into adulthood.

Wide Reading Strategies

Let's take a look at how wide reading can be implemented in the classroom.

1. Provide access to reading material in the classroom.

For example, teachers should create a classroom library that houses a variety of material, including fiction and nonfiction books and periodicals. It's important that there is also a variety in text difficulty so even lower level readers can find materials to enjoy.

2. Provide students with access to online reading materials.

With students who are more technologically savvy than ever, it's important to offer access to both online and traditional paper texts. For example, teachers can sign up students for online free periodicals or help them find blogs that interest them.

3. Take students to the school library.

Many librarians are more than willing to help pair students with books that interest them. Try having students look up topics that interest them. Then you and the librarian can show students the appropriate places in the library to browse for material.

4. Schedule reading time in class.

Shoot for at least twice a week for a minimum of twenty minutes. Ideally, reading time should sometimes be for academic, class-related reading and other times for leisure reading. You can also vary the way students read. For example, students can read aloud to a partner one day and silently the next.

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