Tapping into prior knowledge makes up a great amount of the process of reading comprehension.
Good readers will activate their prior knowledge before, during and after reading. This will add to their understanding of what they are reading.
Types of Connections:
Text to Self connections are personal connections that you make between something you are reading now and something from your own experiences or life.
Text to Text connections are between what you are reading now and other things that they have read, seen, or heard . This may include other books by the same author, stories from a similar genre, or perhaps on the same topic.
Text to World connections are those larger connections you make between what you are reading now and the world beyond what your own direct life experiences.
Cris Tovani (Author of I Read It, but I Don’t Get It) suggests connecting to text helps readers to:
- Become actively involved and engaged.
- Have a purpose for reading and staying focused.
- Develop a clearer picture in their head.
- Understand how characters feel and the motivation behind their actions.
- Remember what they have read and ask questions about the text.
- See how other readers have connected to the reading.
What you can do at home
- Before you begin reading a book with your child look at the cover together. Discuss the title, the blurb and any information about the author it may contain. Have a conversation about what you both may think the story might be about.
- As you read through the story don’t only ask your child for their connections, share your own connections.
- If needed help, or guide, your child to connect characters or events to their own life.
- Discuss any visualizing (mind movies).