What is Paired Reading?

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Paired reading helps the child build confidence and efficiency in his or her reading ability.Paired reading is when a student reads a text with another student in order to develop his or her reading skills. The two students may have the same reading ability or one may be higher than the other. The purpose and methodology will differ based on who the student is being paired with.

The student may be paired with the teacher, a senior student, a classmate with the same reading level or even a parent.

Paired with the teacher

This can be done only if you are focusing on one student alone. In this method, the teacher and student sit and read the text together, until the student is confident of reading alone. At that point, the student taps the teacher’s hand or makes some other sign to indicate that he or she would like to continue alone. The teacher then stops reading and lets the student continue.

While the student continues reading, the teacher listens and corrects him if he pronounces a word incorrectly or is stuck at a word for more than 5 seconds. The teacher then continues reading along with the student, until the student is ready to read by himself again.

Paired with a senior student

The pairing with a senior student is pretty similar to the teachers. However, in this method, the teacher should ensure that the level of the text is not too high for the senior student. Using a senior student lets you focus on other students in the class. This process can also be done off-school hours and even at home with an elder brother or sister.

Paired with a parent

This reading process is more for an assignment. It also helps get the parents involved in the child’s learning process. The method used is similar to the one used with the teacher, except that the parent takes over the teacher’s role. One problem with this method is that parents often do not know the words themselves and may not be able to help the student. They may even misguide the student with incorrect pronunciation.
Parents, therefore, need to be trained to understand this method and how it functions. It may also be suggested that they play a more observational role and mark the words that the student struggles with, instead of teaching them incorrectly.

Paired with a classmate

When we say classmate in this point, we basically mean pairing the student with someone with a similar reading level. The two students may either read the text together or read a paragraph each and mark the words that they do not understand or cannot pronounce.

While pairing students, it is especially important to be sensitive towards the pairing of students with special needs.

Learn More… Take this course: Tackling Tough Text

Discuss Here: How can we cater to the needs of gifted learners in paired reading?

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