Transfer your reading skills

When learning something new, whether it be new skills, new strategies, or new ways of doing things, it is essential to consider the transfer value from the training situation to relevant everyday situations where your new skills can come into play.

In this post, you can find inspiration on how to help students maximise this transfer value.

The method from the FrontRead training, which emphasises skimming the text first and then reading the questions, can also be used when using textbooks in different subjects. The teacher can show students how to orientate themselves in a textbook and thus strengthen their preunderstanding before reading the body text.

Here are some ways to quickly judge whether a book can provide information and answers to the questions students are looking for:

  • Look at the cover, title, table of contents, headings, illustrations, captions, graphs and fact boxes.
  • Look at any summaries and questions at the end of each chapter.
  • Find words and concepts specific to the subject. For example, in maths, words don’t always mean the same thing as they do in everyday language.

Here are some suggestions for exercises to create transfer value:

We recommend that you work concretely on bridging the gap between FrontRead and the students’ reading outside of FrontRead. This is done first and foremost by articulating that the strategies used in the program, can also be applied in other reading situations.

Once this has been communicated to the students, it is obvious to practise this transfer. This can be done by letting the students practice 15 minutes in FrontRead, and then give them an analogue text to read for 10 minutes where the same techniques are applied.

For students from 3rd-6th grade: Provide the students with a printed article.

For students from 7th-10th grade: Ask students to go to a news site and select an interesting article about politics, society, or science.

The students must then follow these simple steps:

  • Get an overview of the article – read headings, look at pictures, and glance at graphs.
  • Skim the body of the text – search for dates, places and people – note these keywords.
  • Read the text in depth and write down 4-5 important points.

To ensure that no students feel unnecessarily pressurised, the exercise can also be done in groups, e.g. in accordance with the pedagogical principles of Cooperative Learning.