Updated: Aug 24, 2020
Modeled reading is at the heart of every classroom, home and library. Expert readers show the listener how the text works by reading the text aloud with passion, engagement and fluency. The teacher reads, talks and thinks their way through a piece of text and shows how reading is done. The expert reader explains what is happening in the text as, together, they experience the thrill of understanding the big ideas, and what the teacher is thinking about as they read.
Modeled reading - also known as reading to or reading aloud - involves students listening to a text read aloud by the teacher or expert reader. The teacher is saying “Watch me as a reader. I am the expert!” Modeled reading demonstrates the complex ideas shown in the text by constantly looking for meaning while the adult does the reading in a fluent and expressive way. It is teaching the reading process in a meaningful context through engaging with quality text.
In modeled reading, the teacher demonstrates all of the skilled reading behaviors that focus on making meaning. They focus on the big ideas by engaging positively with the text and illustrations and how they work together to make meaning. As the students see and hear the expert modelling of the reading behaviors, they begin to imitate what a thinking reader does as they read.
In modeled reading, the teacher models what they are thinking as they read. This think-aloud strategy models how skilled readers construct meaning from a text and the actions the expert reader is taking while they read to monitor their comprehension. 'They are checking that the text makes sense, linking with prior knowledge and experiences and making predictions about what will happen next in the text. Think alouds model how to use comprehension strategies before, during, and after reading.
Teachers model all of the visual features of text by analysing the illustrations, the layout and the text features of stories or factual text. They show the connections between print elements and how the reader uses these to make meaning.
Modeled reading is the perfect time each day for teachers to demonstrate their passion for reading, evoke curiosity and interest in the story by getting the words on the page to dance. It models fluent and expressive reading and builds a love of words and ideas that are more complex than what the learner can read for themselves.