"Readers are a lot like detectives," says Debra Goodman. "We use clues from the author's text. We use strategies to try to figure out what's going on. We make up theories to solve the mystery of each text, and we check out our theories as we read along." Thus, Goodman invites us to join The Reading Detective Club, a unique new book of "mystery cases" that are actually reading strategy lessons for third through eighth graders and their teachers.
Here are two engaging books in one: a smart professional book for teachers and a fun "nonworkbook" for students. The teacher section offers a comprehensive overview of the reading process, with step-by-step instructions for sponsoring a Reading Detective Club, analyses of each case, and discussions of topics such as second-language readers and dialect variations. The student section features a series of reproducible mystery cases presented by student-detectives Jacob, Michele, and Scott. Children are encouraged to solve cases - and come to understand their own approaches to literacy - by exploring the meaning clues, language (grammar) clues, and graphic clues in printed texts.
Central to The Reading Detective Club is the importance of miscue analysis as a vital assessment tool. Teachers will appreciate the accessible, practical advice for appropriating miscue analysis in the classroom. Most of all, students will be reassured and inspired to learn that the detective work they do to understand language is proof that they are already smart thinkers and readers.
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