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Syntax skills help us understand how sentences work—the meanings behind word order, structure, and punctuation. By providing supports for developing Syntax skills, we can help readers understand increasingly complex texts.
Syntactic development progresses through several stages, beginning with one word ("happy"); then simple sentences ("The dog is happy."); to forming and comprehending complex sentences, such as sentences with embedded clauses ("The boy, who licked a lollipop, was happy.") and wh-questions ("Why are you happy?").
Teachers can support language development by using and providing syntax that is appropriately leveled (e.g.
Audiobooks allow students to hear fluent reading and to experience books above their reading skills.
Daily review strengthens previous learning and can lead to fluent recall.
With this interactive technique, teachers help students become storytellers by listening and questioning.
When teachers provide explicit instruction in comprehension strategies and model when to use them, students learn how to flexibly apply them to make meaning of texts.
Free play supports learner interests and allows more complex social interactions to develop.
As students walk through stations working in small groups, the social and physical nature of the learning supports deeper understanding.
In guided inquiry, teachers help students use their own language for constructing knowledge by active listening and questioning.
Spending time with new content helps move concepts and ideas into Long-term Memory.
Independent reading promotes reading development by emphasizing student choice with teacher support in selecting books, as well as by making time for free reading.
Practicing until achieving several error-free attempts is critical for retention.
As students work with and process information by discussing, organizing, and sharing it together, they deepen their understanding.
Literacy centers with reading games, manipulatives, and activities support learner interests and promote the development of more complex reading skills and social interactions.
Providing physical representations of concepts helps activate mental processes.
By talking through their thinking at each step of a process, teachers can model what learning looks like.
Instruction in multiple formats allows students to activate different cognitive skills to understand and remember the steps they are to take in their reading work.
A parent evening meeting about how to support literacy at home with one follow-up meeting with each family has shown strong results for students' reading development.
Reading aloud allows students to hear and practice reading and fluency skills.
Visuals help students recognize relationships within words and sentences to develop reading skills.
Pretending allows students to step back from a problem or task and think about it from multiple angles.
Reading aloud regularly exposes students to new and familiar vocabulary and texts.
Reading aloud books about skills children are learning provides another model for their development.
When students explain to others, they deepen their understanding and gain confidence in their learning.
Students build their confidence and skills by reading and rereading books.
Books for vision differences support reading development for learners with visual needs.
Books of varying complexity and reading levels are necessary for all students to experience reading success.
Multicultural and diverse books are critical for supporting all students.
With rhyming and creative word use, poetry is a genre that supports the development of early literacy skills in particular.
Books with SEL topics, such as developing friendships and identifying emotions, help teach these skills.
Transforming written text into audio activates different parts of the brain to support learning.
When students explain their thinking process aloud, they recognize the strategies they use and solidify their understanding.
Students develop reading skills by listening to and speaking with others in informal ways.
Providing visuals to introduce, support, or review instruction activates more cognitive processes to support learning.
Students with strong early literacy skills benefit from a literacy-rich approach.
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