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Raising Kids Who Read: What Parents and Teachers Can Do by Daniel T. Willingham

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Chapter 6Banking Knowledge for the Future

When a child is learning to decode, we obviously expect little by way of reading comprehension. But by grade 3 or so, we start to expect that students can comprehend longer, more complex texts and that they will branch out into reading texts from genres other than stories. At home and at school, they may be exposed to letters, newspaper articles, and expository text like encyclopedia entries. Kids are still not asked to work with the texts in a serious way (e.g., to use them in research)—that won’t come until the upper elementary years. But once children can decode reliably, the expectations for comprehension begin to increase.

Understanding Longer Texts

We begin by considering what’s required to ...

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