One way to improve students’ reading skills is to work on their writing skills, according to a report from the Carnegie Corporation.
“Teaching writing not only improves how well students write, it also enhances students’ ability to read text accurately, fluently, and with comprehension,” the report, titled “Writing To Read,” states. “In particular, having students write about a text they are reading enhances how well they comprehend it.”
According to the researchers, the most effective strategies for using writing as a vehicle to improve reading skills include having students write on the subjects they read about, having students participate in writing exercises frequently for practice, and teaching students about the structure of written work.
The report emphasizes that reading and writing are related communication skills, linked as cognitive processes in the brain. In writing about a text, a person becomes a better reader as he or she has a means for recording, connecting, analyzing, personalizing, and manipulating key ideas.
A version of this article appeared in the April 04, 2011 edition of Teacher PD Sourcebook