Understanding of Message Encoded in Written Text
Reading comprehension is a complex cognitive process
that is highly influenced by the student’s vocabulary
knowledge in both languages L1+ L2 because vocabulary plays
a critical role in the understanding of what has been read.
Comprehension is also influenced by the student’s cultural
funds of knowledge, which may be very different from what
a teacher may be familiar with and expect.
L1 – Primary/Native language
L2 – Second language
|Main ideas and
- ELL students should be familiar with contents behind
- Be aware that students may not yet have the conceptual
skill of synthesizing the info and may give you a
detail instead of the main idea.
|Order of events
- Depending on culture, sequence of events may not
follow the linear sequence of English (e.g.,
time order might be organized according to order of
importance). This manifests itself in retellings and
|Cause and effect
- Take into consideration each child’s different
cultural, linguistic, religious and background knowledge.
Please ask the student why, when a response may sound
odd such as, Why does it rain in this story?
Response: Because God sent the rain.
- Make sure that students understand the following
prerequisites for comparing behavior:
- Similarities and differences
Preparation of teachers in linguistic and cultural factors
to better equip ELL students with thinking strategies is essential
to the understanding of text comprehension.