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THE EFFECTS OF RECIPROCAL TEACHING ON ENGLISH READING - page 47 / 233

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Summarization is used to help readers grasp the main idea of a text in

order to comprehend the whole picture and to guide them through further reading. It

improves reading skills by focusing the awareness on the important information in a text

and ignoring the unimportant information (Lysynchuck & Pressley, 1990).

Social interaction.

Social interaction is based on the zone of proximal development (ZPD) developed

by Vygotsky (1978). Through it, students are able to learn or solve harder problems, or

reach a more complete development of their potential through some guidance from an

adult (teacher or expert) or learning activities such as discussion, brainstorming, and

group work.

Group work offers four movements of social interaction (Gavalek & Raphael,

1996). First, students in a group learn with the members of their group by sharing,

discussing, and peer tutoring. Second, they internalize this knowledge. In reciprocal

teaching, students learn the four main strategies through the teacher’s modeling and, later,

working in cooperative groups, they think of the four main strategies they have learned,

what strategies to use, and when and how to use them, and why to use them. Third, the

students build their own understanding and reading process on the basis of what they have

learnt from the social setting and thus engage in a process of transformation. Finally, they

share their understanding and thinking with the group. In this stage, the students’ thoughts

are shaped through group discussion (Wilen, 1990). In reciprocal teaching, each

participant in a group has a chance to be a leader and manages group work by discussion

through the four main strategies.

Social interaction is important because it promotes social learning (Dewitz, Carr

& Patbery, 1987). In the reading classroom, working in a group provides opportunities for

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