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Hopelink Adult Education Tutor Support Hopelink/Adult Education Hopelink Adult Education Tutor Support

Special Situations Lesson Idea: Reading in Concert


Reading to or along with the student for a short time is a way to build sight word vocabulary, increase fluency and model good reading. This simple but very effective procedure exposes the student to many more words than if a student read at his or her own pace.

Adapted from PULL – Project for Unique Learners in Literacy by LVA–Illinois, 1994 and Locating and Correcting Reading Difficulties by Eldon Ekwall and James Shanker; Macmillan 1993.


Choose a text passage at your student’s approximate reading level or slightly higher. It can be interest-based or selected as being effective in building sight vocabulary; for good examples see the Laubach materials.

  • The student will need to be comfortable with you sitting close to him or her. If the student is not comfortable with close contact, this procedure can be adapted for use with a tape recorder.
  • Sit the student slightly in front of you, so you can point to the material the student is reading and read directly into the student’s ear.
  • The tutor reads at a rate that allows the student to read along with you as you point to the words. Pointing to the words is an important part of the procedure!
  • At first, the student may be unable to keep up with you, keep your rate constant and the student will soon be able to keep up with you.
  • Encourage the student at this stage to follow along the text with his or her finger.
  • Continue for 10 to 15 minutes, or until your student tires.
  • Increase the difficulty of the reading passages or increase reading speed as the students reading improves.
  • Reinforce by recording text on tape and encouraging the student to take the text and tape home for additional practice.
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