Reading Course Support Materials

Section C Glossary

Courtesy of the CSU Institute for Education Reform, Center for the Improvement of Reading Instruction


Glossary of Reading Terms

This glossarywas developed by the writing team in order to provide a comprehensive list of important reading terminology linked to the RlCAContentSpecifications. Referencesforthis list came from a variety of sources including the California Reading Association, theAB 3482 Comprehensive Reading Leadership materials, the definitions in the AB 1086 legislation, and the expertise of the writing committee members

Glossary of Reading Terms


Accuracy - Correctly identifying letters or words.

Advanced Organizer (Ausubel, 1960) - A technique in which brief written text (in the form of ideas or facts or questions) about a new book students will read are presented to them before they read it in an attempt to enhance their comprehension.

Affixes - A syllable or group of syllables (i.e., prefixes, such as anti- or post-, and suffixes, such as -ly or -ment) which, when added to a word or a root, alter the meaning of the word.

Alphabetic Principle - The assumption underlying alphabetic writing systems that each sound or phoneme of a language should have its own distinctive graphic representation.

Analytic Phonics - A whole-to-part approach to word study in which the student is first taught a number of sight words and then relevant phonetic generalizations, which are subsequently applied to other words; deductive phonics.

Anticipation Guide - (Readence, Bean, and Baldwin, 1985). These guides allow individual students to reflect on and express their opinions in relation to written statements about what they are reading that challenge or confirm their beliefs. When students give an initial response, they can discuss their responses in small groups. Then those groups can meet together so that students can have the benefit of the collective background knowledge of the larger group.

Assessment - The act or process of gathering data in order to better understand the strengths and weaknesses of student learning, as by observation, testing, interviews, etc.

Auditory Blending - The ability to fuse discrete phonemes into recognizable words.

Auditory Closure - The ability to form meaningful words or utterances from incomplete or distorted sound patterns.

Auditory Discrimination - The ability to hear phonetic likenesses and differences in phonemes and words.

Auditory-Discrimination Test - A test of the ability to hear likenesses and differences in phonemes and words.

Auditory Processing - The full range of mental activity involved in reacting to environmental stimuli, especially sounds, and in considering their meanings in relation to past experience and to their future use.

Auditory-Visual Integration - The association of sound and sight, as phoneme-grapheme associations.

Author's Chair - (Hansen, Graves, 1983). This strategy provides a way for readers to share with each other the excitement of a particular moment in relation to a book or to their own writing. The student in the author's chair reads aloud a selected piece of text or a piece of their own writing. Peers then have an opportunity to respond to what is read aloud.

Background Knowledge Assessments - Tools or strategies designed to assess a student's background knowledge, experiences or expertise about content, story knowledge, or other areas of study.

Basal Reading Program - A collection of student texts and workbooks, teacher's manuals, and supplemental materials for development of reading and sometimes writing instruction, used chiefly in the elementary and middle school grades.

Benchmarks - Specific learning goals or achievement performances that schools and districts identify in order to guide the growth and progress of student learning.

Base Word - A word to which affixes may be added to create related words, as teach in reteach or teaching.

Basic Skills - A general term referring primarily to cognitive and language-related skills such as speaking, listening, reading, writing, and mathematics, which are needed for many school learning tasks.

Big Books - (Holdaway, 1979). To simulate lap reading, many teachers use big books with their young students. Big books are enlarged reading books; the large type allows students to read together as they learn about concepts of print and various decoding and comprehension strategies.

Blend - To combine the sounds represented by letters to pronounce a word; sound out.

Book Talk - A strategy for discussing books, either before they are read to entice students to read, or after students have read a book to get them to think critically about what they have read. Book talks can be lead by a teacher, librarian, or the students themselves.

Boundary - In linguistics, a division between units of language, as between: 1) words, as my book (words boundary); 2) word parts, as unkind-ly (stem or affix boundary); 3) syllables, as knowi-edge (syllable boundary).

California Learning Record - A comprehensive reading assessment tool developed by the Center for Language and Learning, El Cajon, CA.

Choral Reading - (Schiller, 1973). This is an interpretive reading of text, often poetry or songs, by a group of choral voices. Students must read a text repeatedly in order to decide how to prepare it for choral reading.

Cloze - This term refers to a variety of sentence completion techniques in which words are strategically left out of a text so that readers can supply the missing words using context only or, sometimes, limited graphophonic cues. Cloze tests can be designed to provide informal diagnostic information.

Cluster - Linguistic sequence: 1) of sounds, as the consonant cluster ispi in spell; 2) of parts of speech, as the verb cluster might have been.

Comprehension - The interpretation of print on the page into a meaningful message. Comprehension depends on readers' decoding abilities, prior knowledge, cultural and social background, and their ongoing comprehension monitoring strategies.

Comprehension Monitoring - In the act of reading, the noting of one's successes and failures in developing or attaining meaning, usually with reference to an emerging conception of the meaning of the text as a whole, and adjusting one's reading process accordingly.

Comprehension Strategies - Specific, conscious, flexible strategies that readers learn and can be taught to assist in understanding narrative and expository texts.

Concepts About Print - (Clay, 1979). These are concepts about the ways print works. Some of the basic concepts about print include: directionality (that readers and writers move from left to right and top to bottom); spacing (used to separate words); recognition of words and letters; sequencing and locating skills; searching for cues from different sources, checking own responses, and correcting own errors.

Consonant - A speech sound made by partial or complete closure of part of the vocal tract, which obstructs air flow and causes audible friction in varying amounts.

Consonant Blend - A combination of 2 or 3 consonants that appear consecutively in a word and each consonant represents its most common sound. These can be initial or final consonants, as sw in swell or str in strap or sk in mask.

Consonant Digraph - A combination of two consonant letters representing a single speech sound, as gn for In! in gnat, or gh for If/in rough.

Consonant Substitution - A word-identification technique in which a known consonant sound, usually in the initial or final position, is combined with a known phonogram to facilitate pronunciation of unknown words, as replacing /hI of hole with In, IpI, /m/, or /s! to identify role, pole, mole, or sole.

Consonant-Vowel-Consonant (CYC) Sequence - On of the most common sequences of sounds in syllables, as in cat, red, dog.

Consonant-Vowel-Consonant Silent e (CVCe) Sequence - Another common sequences of sounds in syllables, as in cake, game, like.

Content Reading - Books, textbooks and/or materials related to specific subjects such as science or social studies. Often categorized as informational or expository texts.

Context Clue - Information from the immediate textual setting that helps identify a word or word group, as by words, phrases, sentence illustrations, syntax, typography, etc.

Conventional Spelling - Correct and accurate spelling of words.

Cueing Systems - These are three of the language systems on which readers rely for cues as they seek meaning from the text: graphophonic (based on letter-sound relationships and visual knowledge); semantic (based on meaning); and syntactic (based on grammar).

Curriculum-Based Assessment - The appraisal of student progress by using materials and procedures directly from the curriculum taught.

Daily News - A writing strategy in which the teacher models writing in front of students as she takes dictation from them about a specific event they are describing. Then students and teacher "work the text" to reinforce and practice skills they have learned or are learning, such as concepts about print, phonics elements and rules, punctuation, etc.

Decoding - This involves a series of strategies used selectively by readers to recognize written words. In decoding, the reader locates cues in a word that reveal enough about it to help in its pronunciation and in attaching meaning to it.

Decodable Text - Texts, stories or books made up of a sequence of sound-spelling correspondences determined on the basis o both frequency and utility of phonic principles. The purpose of the text is to provide repeated practice recognizing spelling units in printed words using a phonic decoding strategy.

Deletion - To leave out as in phoneme deletion or word deleted.

Diagnosis - The act, process, or result of identifying the nature of a disorder or disability through observation and examination. Note: Technically, diagnosis means only the identification and labeling of a disorder. As the term is used in education, however, it often includes the planning of instruction and an assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of the student.

Diagnostic Teaching - The use of the results of student performance on current tasks to plan future learning activities; instruction in which diagnosis and instruction are fused into a single ongoing process.

Diagnostic Test - A test used to analyze strengths and weaknesses in content-oriented skills. Note: "Diagnostic test may permit comparison among several subabilities of the same individuals and sometimes comparisons of strong and weak points of a group or a class... Available instruments for the diagnosis of read difficulties vary widely in the thoroughness of analysis the permit and in e specific procedures followed.

Dialogue Journal - These journals are written dialogue between the journal "owner" and a selected "partner;" the partner responds to what has been written by the owner. It is important that responses deal with what has been written and not just the conventions of writing. Journal owners and partners can be students, teachers, parents, etc.

Differential Reading Instruction - The provision of varied learning situations, as whole class, small-group, or individual instruction, to meet the needs of students at different levels of reading competence.

Digraph - Two letters that represent on speech sound, as ch for /ch/ in chin or ea for /e/ in bread.

Diphthong - A vowel sound produced when the tongue moves or glides from one vowel sound towards another vowel sound or semivowel sound in the same syllable, as hI in buy and vowel sounds in bee, bay, book, boy, and bough.

Directed Reading Activity (DRA) - A step-by-step process for presenting a reading lesson; developmental reading lesson, especially in content fields.

Directionality - One type of the concepts about print or concepts about written language whereby students leam that in English, print is written and read from left to right and from top to bottom on a page.

Discourse Analysis - The study of meaningful language units larger than a sentence.

Dolch Words - High frequency, commonly used sight words found in reading materials. Students often increase their reading fluency by becoming completely automatic at reading these words.

Double-entry Journal - This is a double-entry record in which a student takes notes and adds reflections while reading any text. A two-column format is used. Typically, the left column is used to record specific statements from a text that are important to the reader in understanding the text; the right column is used to record responses and reactions to those statements.

Dyslexia - A developmental reading disability, presumably congenital and perhaps hereditary, that may vary in degree from mild to severe. Note: Dyslexia, originally called word blindness, occurs in persons who have adequate vision, hearing, intelligence, and general language functioning. Dyslexics frequently have difficulty in spelling and in acquiring a second language, suggesting that dyslexia is part of a broad type of language disability.

Echo Reading - This is a strategy in which a lead reader reads aloud a section of text, and a second reader's voice follows right after (or "echoes") that which was first read.

ELL - English Language Leamer

Emergent Literacy - Development of the association of print with meaning that begins early in a child's life and continues until the child reaches the stage of conventional reading and writing; "the reading and writing concepts and behaviors of young children that precede and develop into conventional literacy."

Emergent Reading - This course of a child's early interaction with books and other print, as from pretend reading to genuine efforts to understand the nature and meaning of print.

Encoding - Transferring oral language into written language.

Environmental Print - Any print which is found in the physical environment, such as street signs, billboards, labels, business signs, etc.

Etymology - A branch of linguistics focusing on the study of the origin and historical development of words.

Evaluative Comprehension Skills - Opportunities for students to make judgments about, reflect on, and value what they are reading as well as judge the accuracy of assertions, arguments, or proposals within texts they are reading.

Explicit Instruction - Thoughtful, systematic instruction of concepts, strategies and knowledge that usually builds from simple to complex in clearly formulated and defined ways and is known to both teachers and learners. Often associated with explicit, systematic phonics instruction or explicit teaching of comprehension strategies where teachers explicitly present information, provide practice, and have students apply what they have learned in the context of reading and writing activities.

Expository Text - A form of writing intended to set forth or explain, and which employs a wide variety of structures (McGee & Richgels, 1985, and Vacca, 1981). The five major types include 1) enumeration: listing of facts; 2) time order: putting facts or events into a sequence using references to time; 3) comparison/contrast: pointing out likenesses and/or differences; 4) cause/effect: showing how facts or events affect other facts of events; 5) problem/solution: showing the development of a problem and its solutions.

Flexible grouping - Student reading progress guides the placement in guided reading groups and may change and be adjusted to student needs.

Final E - Silent e; the spelling pattern in English in which e is the last letter in a word, does not represent a final sound, and often signals a long vowel sound for the preceding vowel letter, as e in hate, kite, robe.

Final Position - Location of sounds in words, as in final consonant or the ending letters in words.

Fixation - The observable stops in eye movements, as when viewing a picture, looking around the environment, or reading. Note: Visual perception occurs during, not between, fixations.

Fluency - Reading smoothly, quickly and with expression.

Fluent Reader - A reader whose performance exceeds normal expectation with respect to age and ability; independent reader.

Formal Assessment - Periodic, specific evaluations of a student's reading progress and/or achievement.

Frustration Reading Level - A readability or grade level of material that is to difficult to be read successfully by a student even with normal classroom instruction and support.

Genre - A term used to classify literary works into categories, such as novel, mystery, historical fiction, biography, short story, poem, etc.

Gist - Main idea or specific information of what is read; literal understanding.

Graded Word List - A list of words ranked by grade level, reader level, or other level of difficulty or complexity, often used to assess competence in word identification, word-meaning knowledge, and spelling.

Grand Conversation - (Peterson, Eeds, 1990). In this instructional strategy, a group leader encourages the group to participate in a discussion of a text that has just been read by all. The discussion can be reflective and interpretive, leading students to "get into the text" to think about what the author has written and to encourage them to share what they think about it.

Grapheme - A written or printed representation of a phoneme as b for fbI and oy for /oi/ in boy.

Grapheme-Phoneme Correspondence - The relationship between a grapheme and the phoneme(s) it represents; letter-sound correspondence, as c representing /k/in cat and /s! in cent.

Graphic Organizer - These organizers provide a visual representation of facts and concepts from a text and their relationships with an organized frame. Graphic organizers are effective tools for thinking and learning as they help teachers and students to represent abstract or implicit information in more concrete form; depict the relationships among facts and concepts; aid in organizing and elaborating ideas; relate new information with prior knowledge; and effectively store and retrieve information.

Graphophonic Cues - Using awareness and knowledge of individual sounds and the letters that represent them to sound out, read, and understand words and longer texts.

Guided Reading - Students work in small groups to read as independently as possible a text the teacher has selected for them and introduced to them. This text should be at the group's instructional level, that is, the students will be able to read it with 90%-94% accuracy. Students leam to self-monitor their own reading behaviors and use appropriate strategies to fully decode and comprehend a text.

Hard C - In phonics, the /k! sound represented by the letter c in cake, ascot. Hard G - The /g/ sound represented by the letter g in gate, again.

High Frequency Word - A word that appears many more times than most other words in spoken or written language (see also Dolch Words).

Hot Seat - A strategy in which a student assumes the role of a major character in a story and prepares for an interrogation from the other students in the group. The group prepares questions about a character that they would like that character to answer. After preparation, the group asks the student in the "hot seat" their questions. When a predetermined period of time is up, it becomes another student's turn to assume the role of a different character and sit in the "hot seat."

I-Chart - (Hoffman, 1992) A type of organizer designed to foster critical thinking in which 3-4 prepared questions are listen at the top of a grid chart. Information about what students know or believe about each question is recorded on the chart in one line. Possible resources are then discussed and listed down the left-hand side of the chart. As students find answers, they are listed under the appropriate question and next to the source. Columns are also developed for "Other Interesting Facts" and "New Questions."

Implicit Instruction - Indirect teaching that may not directly express what is to be leamed but offers students opportunities for more inductive reasoning and exploration of ideas, concepts, or learning sequences. Often indirect teaching provides opportunities to pursue "teachable moments" (spontaneous or unexpected events or activities), and/or respond to students' questions and needs at a particular time in their learning.

Inferential Comprehension Skills - Reading skills that assist students to connect previous experiences and knowledge to new information from text by drawing conclusions, determining relationships between objects or events, and conceptualizing implied ideas.

Inflectional Endings - Patterns or rules about adding endings to words. Two key principles are the foundation: when adding -ed or -ing to a CVC-pattern word, double the final consonant; when adding -ed or -ing to a CVCe-pattern word, drop the e.

Informal Assessment - Opportunities to use student work, to observe students in the classroom, to use criterion or diagnostic tools to plan instruction. Such assessments may be linked to more formal or summative assessment such as portfolios, benchmarks, pre and post testing expectations, or progress toward standards.

Informal Reading Inventory (IRI) - The use of a graded series of passages of increasing difficulty to detennine students' strengths, weaknesses, and strategies in word identification and comprehension.

Initial Blend - The joining of two or more consonant sounds, represented by letters, that begin a word without losing the identity of the sounds, as /bl/ in black, /skr/ in scramble.

Initial Position - Beginning sounds or vowels in words.

Independent Reading Level - The level of reading material that a child can easily read independently with high comprehension and few word identification problems, and an accuracy rate of 95% to 100%.

Instructional Reading Level - The level of reading material that a child can read successfully, with instruction and support, with 90%-94% accuracy.

Interrupted Book Report - An activity in which students take turns sharing the highlights of a self-selected text with the class in a brief, timed period (from 30 to 60 seconds). At the end of the time period, a student must stop and let the next student share his/her book. With the imposed time limit, students are forced to focus on the most important or interesting part of the text they've read.

Interactive Writing - A shared experience used to assist emergent readers in learning to read and write. With the help from the teacher, students dictate sentences about a share experience, such as a story, movie, or event. The teacher verbally "stretches" each word so students can distinguish its sounds and letters, as students use chart paper to write the letter while repeating the sound. After each word is completed, the teacher and students reread it. Students take turns writing letters to complete the words and the sentence(s). The completed charts are put in the wall so students can reread them or rely on them for standard spelling.

Interventions - Reading strategies that are expanded in more detail for students (sometimes 20-30% of a class) who need more support in varied areas of reading/language arts.

Invented Spelling - Also known as temporary spelling, or approximation, this term refers to an emergent writer's attempt to spell a word phonetically when the spelling is unknown. Children's temporary spelling is a direct reflection of their own knowledge and understanding of how words are actually spelled. It can also be a valuable medium for diagnosing difficulties and evaluating progress. By engaging students in thinking actively and reflectively about the sounds of words and their spellings, exercise in temporary spellings lays a strong cognitive foundation for both formal spelling and phonics. It does not, however, eliminate the need for leaming how to spell correctly. Support for temporary spelling should be combined with formal spelling instruction to move students towards rapid growth in word recognition and correct spelling.

IRI Word Lists - Lists of words that can be used with students to help place them in appropriate reading materials, to assess their comprehension, and to determine their strategies for word identification.

Irregular Sight Words - Words that contain letter-sound correspondences unique to themselves or to only a few words, such as was, they, none, and done. When learning to read, students need to know such words fluently and automatically as they progress in their reading skills.

I-Search - A strategy in which students examine a question or theme of their own choosing from a story they would like to explore in depth. Investigations are conducted beyond the classroom, and students often write up their conclusions formally in an "I-search paper."

Jigsaw - This is collaborative learning technique in which individuals become "experts" on one portion of a text and share their expertise with a small group, called their home group or rainbow team. Each member of the home group becomes an "expert" on a different part of the text (usually informational text), shares their new knowledge with their group so that each member will get a sense of the whole text. This strategy is effective when a large piece of text must be covered in a short period of time.

KWL - (Ogle, 1986; Carr and Ogle, 1987). A flexible and popular strategy for guiding students' thinking about a text before, during, and after reading. The letters stand for what students Know about a particular topic, what the Want to find out, and what they have Learned. This strategy works especially well with informational texts.

KWHL - (Vogt) This strategy is a spin-off of KWL, with the H standing for How the students will find the information after they have determined what they want to find out.

Language Experience Approach - (Van Allen, 1976). This approach helps beginning learners bring their own knowledge and experience to bear in constructing meaning from the printed word. The importance of relating oral language to written language and of relating reading to writing is emphasized in the motto "Anything I can say, I can write; anything I can write, I can read."

Learning CenterlStations - A location within the classroom in which students are presented with instructional materials, specific directions, clearly defined objectives, and/or provisions for self-evaluation.

Learning Logs - Notebooks or folders where students record thoughts, notes, reactions, graphics and visual representations, or opinions about what they are reading, about content they are studying or about relationships and connections to increasing knowledge and ideas in any subject area.

Letter-sound Correspondence - Letters represent the small sound units within spoken and heard words, called phonemes. Alphabetic systems vary in the degree to which they represent the surface sounds of words. When students sound out words, they must produce the sounds represented by each letter in the word, and then identify the word.

Listening Comprehension Level - The highest readability or graded level of material that can be comprehended well when it is read aloud to the student.

List-Group-Label - (Taba, 1967). In this strategy (originally conceived for vocabulary development in science and social studies), the teacher supplies the class with a stimulus topic drawn from their experiences or from materials they are studying. Students contribute words they associate with the topic. When the list reaches 25-30, students are then directed to categorize the words and create labels for each group.

Literal Comprehension Skills - Skills students use to retrieve information stated in a passage or text; getting the "gist" of what is read or the specific stated information.

Literature Circle - (Short & Kauffman, 1986). Students read a piece of literature and meet as a group to discuss it. The discussions are open-ended and focus on bringing the literature and reader together. The group can begin by discussing reactions to the book, sharing favorite parts, and raising questions about the parts they did not understand or that surprised them. At the end of each discussion, the group should decide what they want to talk about the next time they meet; this gives students time to reread certain sections of the book and to think about the topic or questions.

Literature Discussion/Journal Responses - Similar to reading logs; notebooks, journals, or folders where students respond to their reading in writing both independently and/or in response to specific questions, prompts, discussions, or requests.

Long Vowel - In teaching practice, the vowel sounds in English that are also names of the alphabet letters, a, e, i, o, u, as Ia! in halo, lel in demon, /11 in bind, lol in told, In! in unit.

Lower-Case Letters - Letters of the alphabet that are not capitalized.

Mapping - Organizing and thinking tool that assists students in understanding concepts, ideas, or relationships and provides a structure for elaborating information, defining vocabulary, comparing or contrasting, or determining hierarchies.

Medial Position - The location of vowel or consonant sounds in the middle of words or syllables.

Metacognition - This term refers to reflection on one's own thinking and leaming processes. Students need to leamoto evaluate their own decoding and comprehension, plan sequences of actions, and regulate their reading behavior to adjust to changing conditions.

Metacognitive Awareness - In reading, knowing when what one is reading makes sense by monitoring and controlling one's own comprehension; metacomprehension.

Mini-lesson - Direct teaching on specific topics or skills that some members of the class seem ready to take advantage of the "teachable moment." This direct instruction can also be conducted for the benefit of the students who need more information or further clarification on skills or topics that have already been taught. The lessons or series of lessons are connected to the broader goal of getting students to become independent readers and writers. These lessons are presented briefly and succinctly, on the assumption that such information will be added to the set of ideas, strategies, and skills to be drawn upon as needed.

Minimally Contrasting Pairs - Words that differ only in initial or medial or final sounds (e.g., pest/best, scrapple/scrabble, cat/cap.).

Miscue Analysis - (K.S. Goodman, 1976) A strategy for analyzing the errors students make when they read aloud. After listening to a student and noting their reading, a teacher can categorize students' errors or patterns according the graphophonic, syntactic or semantic cueing model in order to determine student strengths, needs, and instructional steps. See also Running Record or IRI.


Mnemonic - Having to do with memory, especially with strategies to improve memorizing.


Morning Message - Students observe as the teacher writes a meaningful "morning message" addressed to all students on the board about a specific event that is planned for the day, or an interesting thought/question for the day. The teacher uses the message as an instructional tool for discussinglreinforcing skills the students are leaming or already know well (e.g., the conventions of writing, the cueing systems, a phonics lesson, etc.). Students point out strategies used to help them read the message. Throughout the school year, student may also have the opportunity to construct the morning message.


Morpheme - A Linguistic unit of relatively stable meaning that cannot be divided into smaller meaningful parts; the smallest meaningful part of a word.


Morphology - The study of structure and forms of words including derivation, inflection, and compounding.


Narrative - A story or narrated account of actual or fictional events.


Nonphonetic Word - In teaching practice, a word whose pronunciation may not be accurately predicted from its spelling.


Nonsense Syllable - A pronounceable combination of graphic characters, usually trigrams, that do not make a word, as kak, vor, mek, pronounced as English spellings.


Note Taking - Taking notes from what is being read, from lectures, from group discussion in order to better understand what is read or expected.


Observations/Anecdotal Records - Teacher notes regarding student reading behaviors, taken while observing students in reading, writing or oral language activities; usually recorded over an extended period of time as an informal assessment of progress.


Oddity Tasks - In studies of phonological awareness, a procedure in which children are asked to identify the discrepant member of a trio or words based on their onset and rhyme characteristics, as car is the odd word among car, duck, dog, and mail is odd among mop, mail, pop.


Onset and Rime - These are intersyllabic units that are smaller than words and syllables but larger than phonemes. The onset is the portion of the syllable that precedes the vowel (e.g., in the word "black" the onset is "bl"). The rime is the portion of the syllable including the vowel(s) and any consonant(s) that follow (e.g., the word or syllable "out" is a rime without an onset).

Onset/Rime Cloze - Using a doze format to asses knowledge of onsets and nines. See also Cloze.


Open Syllable - A syllable ending in a vowel sound rather than a consonant sound, as /ba/ and /be/ in baby.


Orthography - Examines the way language is written (encoded).


Outlining - Systematic format or structure for summarizing written or oral work , usually constructed into headings and subheadings or by levels of importance.


Peer Editing - A form of collaborative learning in which students work with peers in editing a piece of writing.


Phoneme - One of the sets of the smallest units of speech that distinguish one utterance or word from another in a given language, e.g., the In in rug or the fbi in bug.


Phoneme Grapheme Correspondence - The relationship between a phoneme and its graphemic representation(s), as Is!, spelled s in sit, c in city, ss in grass.


Phoneme Awareness - This is the understanding that spoken words and syllables are themselves made up of sequences of elementary speech sounds, or phonemes.


Phonic Analysis - In teaching practice, the identification of words by their sounds.


Phonic Cue - Evidence in a word's spelling if the speech or sounds represented by a letter or group of letters.


Phonics - A way of teaching, reading, and spelling that stresses symbol-sound relationships, used especially in beginning instruction.


Phonogram - A graphic character or symbol that can represent a phonetic sound, phoneme or word.


Phonological Awareness - A broader term then phonemic awareness; refers to language sensitivity and ability to manipulate language at the levels of syllables, rhymes, and individual speech sounds.


Phonology - The permissible arrangements of speech sounds in forming morphemes and words.


Picture Walk - In this instructional strategy, the teacher guides the students through the text by looking at and discussing the pictures before reading the story. This helps the students to focus on illustrations instead of text and gives them a point of reference they can use when they actually read the story.


Polysyllabic - This terms refers to words containing more than one syllable.


Predictable Text - This type of reading material supports the prediction of certain features of text and are especially valuable for readers who are not yet fluent or who do not use effective reading strategies. Text is predictable when it enables students to quickly and easily predict what the author is going to say and how the author is going to say it based on their knowledge of the world and of language. Predictable books can also contain: rhythmical, repetitive, or cumulative patterns; familiar stories or story lines; familiar sequences; or a good match between illustrations and text.


Prediction/Confirmation Strategies - Meaning-making strategy employed while reading to predict what might come next in a story and then reading and confirm or reject the initial prediction as more text is read and understood; may be written or oral.


Prefix - An affix attached before a base or root, as re- in reprint.


Prephonetic Writing - Writing of young children that is imitative of adult writing and may include letter forms, letter-like forms, number-like forms, or idiosyncratic symbols.


Preprimer - In a basal reading program, a booklet used before the first reader to introduce students to features in texts and books and sometimes to introduce specific characters found later in a series.


Prereading - Referring to activities designed to develop needed attitudes and skills before formal instruction in reading.


Primary Language - The first language a child learns to speak.


Primer - A beginning book for the teaching of reading; specifically, the first formal textbook in a basal reading program, usually preceded by a readiness book and one or more preprimers.


Print Awareness - In emergent literacy, a learner's growing recognition of conventions and characteristics of a written language.


Print-rich Environment - An environment in which students are provided many opportunities to interact with print, and where an abundance and variety of printed materials are available and accessible. Students have many opportunities to read and to be read to. In such an environment, reading and writing are modeled by the teacher and are used for a wide variety of authentic, everyday purposes.


Prior Knowledge - Experiences and understandings of the world, of concepts, of words, of information that children bring to their reading.


Proficient Reader - Child who is demonstrating reading skills, strategies and achievement appropriate to his/her age and/or grade.


Proofreading - Editing of written work for correct spelling, grammar, punctuation, etc.


Quaker Reading - In this whole class or group activity, student each have a copy of the same book. They randomly take turns reading a sentence or portion of the text "as the mood strikes them." In other words, they read the next sentence or passage as they are motivated to do so, with each student randomly taking a turn until all of the text has been read aloud.


Quickwrite - A writing activity that requires students to write non-stop for a prescribed amount of time, usually for 5-10 minutes. It is often focused on one topic, generating as many ideas as possible. It may be used as a pre-writing activity or as an opportunity for students to clarify their thoughts about the topic.

R-Controlled Vowel Sound- The modified sound of a vowel immediately preceding IrI in the same syllable, as in care, never, sir, or, curse, etc.


Reader's Theatre - In this strategy, readers are helped to see that reading is an active and open process of constructing meaning. The focus is on bringing stories and characters alive through oral interpretation. Unlike a play, in Reader's Theatre there is no costuming, movement, stage sets, or memorized lines. The focus is on the literature and not the actors, and on communicating with the audience through the use of facial expressions, voice and gestures. To highlight multiple interpretations of the texts, groups can try several different readings of the same story.


Reader's Workshop - This is the process in which students read, explore and respond to books of different genres and on a variety of topics. Students can respond in logs and share their entries with others for response, or have group discussions of books read. These activities provide students with practice in using successful decoding and comprehension strategies.


Reading Fluency - Reading smoothly, quickly and with expression.


Fluent Reader - A reader whose performance exceeds normal expectation with respect to age and ability; independent reader.


Reading Rate - Refers to the speed at which students read selected passages.


Reading Response Log - Through writing in logs in response to texts read, students demonstrate their written ability to synthesize and interpret information from silent reading and oral discussion. It is also an opportunity for students to write their opinions or questions about what was read or discussed.


Recognition Vocabulary - The number of different words known without words analysis; words understood quickly and easily, sight vocabulary.


Recreational Reading - Voluntary or leisure reading for pleasure rather than instruction.


ReQuest - (Manzo, 1969). This is short for "reciprocal questioning." This strategy was developed to help students formulate their own questions, acquire purposes for reading, and develop independent comprehension abilities. Following silent reading, the teacher answers students' questions and serves as a model by asking higher-level questions. This modeling process helps to refine and extend students' abilities in posing their own questions.


Rereading - (Clay, 1991). Returning to a text and reading it again immediately, of after several days, or even after several weeks is a good tactic for early readers. Rereading helps improve a young reader's speed, accuracy, expression, comprehension, and linguistic growth.


Retelling - A young reader should be invited to retell a story in his/her own words in order to check the child's comprehension in relation to the plot, setting, characters, and any underlying inferences. Sometimes the retelling can be followed by questions to elicit further information.

Rime - The rime is the portion of the syllable including the vowel(s) and any consonant(s) that follow (e.g., in the word "black" the rime is "ack"). Not all syllables or words have an onset, but they all have a rime (e.g., the word or syllable "out" is a rime without an onset).


Rhyme - Correspondence of ending sounds of words or lines of verse.


Root Words - A word to which prefixes and suffixes are added, often of Greek or Latin origin. For example, unwholesomeness is made from the word whole.


Running Records - A coded analysis to assess a student's reading strategies as helshe reads a short passage, and is evaluated by the determination of error rate, self-correction rate, accuracy, categorization of errors in the semantic, syntactic, graphophonics cueing systems, miscue analysis. Leveled reading texts and the running record establish a students instructional level.


Saccade - The quick, jumping movement of the eye as it shifts fixation from place to place, usually without awareness of the viewer, as in searching for a visual field or in moving along a line of print in reading.


Scaffolding - This term implies that what students can do with help, they can eventually do on their own. To facilitate this, student work in partnership with a more advanced peer or adult. This partner "scaffolds" the task be engaging in appropriate instructional interactions designed to model or assist. These interactions eventually lead to independence.


Schemata - Cognitive structures that provide for organizing new information and linking it to prior knowledge and experiences. According to "schema theory," the basis for comprehension, learning and remembering ideas from texts is the reader's "schema" or organized knowledge of the world which depends on an accumulation of life experiences.


Segmentation - Saying words slowly by holding each continuous sound for about one and one-half seconds and then switching to the next sound without pausing. For example, "sssssaaaadddd."


Self-correction Strategies - Using knowledge of reading skills and strategies, often graphophonic, semantic and syntactic cues, to comprehend text.


Self-monitoring - This is the ultimate goal of guided reading (see Guided Reading). Students leam to monitor their own reading behavior and use appropriate strategies to effectively decode and comprehend text.


Semantic Cue - Evidence from the general sense or meaning of a written or spoken communication that aids in the identification of an unknown word.


Semantic Feature Analysis - A strategy for developing vocabulary knowledge or concepts by establishing shared meaning relationships between words. It is often represented in a graphic organizer or matrix that can be completed to show, for example, how words are alike or different or the distinguishing characteristics of flowers in a science unit.


Semantics - The study of meaning in language, as the analysis of the meanings of words, phrases, sentences, discourse, and whole texts.

Semiphonetic - A stage of spelling development where children begin to represent phonemes in words with letters, indicating that they have a beginning and/or incomplete understanding of the alphabetic principle, that a link exists between letters and sounds. For example, KT for Katie.


Shared Reading - A strategy in which students read a text with the help of a teacher in an effort to leam to "read by reading." Shared reading is a step between reading to students and independent reading by students. It takes place in a non-threatening leaming environment in which risk-taking, mistakes, and approximations are seen as a normal part of learning, not signs of failure. The purpose is for students to become independent in reading texts that would otherwise be too difficult.


Sheltering (Sheltered English) - (Shifini, 1988). This involves a series of instructional strategies used in combination with a modified curriculum and materials in order to provide meaningful content area instruction for intermediate English speakers. English is used as the medium of instruction, modified to make the subject more comprehensible. Native language resources may be used to support the understanding of the subject matter.


Sight Vocabulary -Words that are automatically recalled on sight because they are familiar to the reader.


Soft C - In phonics, the IsI sound that the letter c represents, as in cymbal, percent. Soft G - In phonics, the /jI sound that the letter g represents, as in gentle, giant.


Sound Out - The application of phonics skills in reproducing the sound(s) represented by a letter or letter group in a word.


SQ3R - (Robinson, 1961, 1983). This is an instructional strategy for study reading. The steps in the strategy are:

o Survey: The student previews the reading material to determine the overall content and organization;

o Question: The student establishes a purpose for reading by reviewing questions posed by the teacher (or those at the end of the chapter);

o Read: The student reads in order to answer the questions raised.

o Recite: The student closes the book and attempts to answer the questions raised.

o Review: Later, the student again attempts to answer the questions that were raised.


SSR - This stands for "silent sustained reading." During SSR time, each student chooses a book or books to read for a designated period of time (typically 15-30 minutes). Everyone, including the teacher, finds a comfortable place for reading without interruption. Students who can read choose a book at their independent reading level. SSR also provides students with time to practice the decoding and comprehension skills they have leamed.


SSR Book Choice Log - Record keeping tool to record the books that are being read during SSR; can be completed by the student or the teacher.


Standard English - The social level of American English spoken by the general populace.

Stem - The part of a word to which an inflectional suffix is or can be added. See also root word.


Storyboard - In this activity, students are asked to recall major events of a story, usually 6-8. The teacher asks to students to illustrate in sequence major events on the squares of a storyboard form. Student then share their storyboards.


Story Frame/Map - A graphic organizer of major events and ideas from a story to help guide students' thinking and heighten their awareness of the structure of stories. The teacher can model this process by filling out a chart on an overhead while reading, or students can complete a chart individually or in groups after the story is read, illustrating or noting characters, setting, problem/solution, climax, conflict, etc.


Structural Analysis - An analysis of words formed by adding prefixes, suffixes or other meaningful word units to a base word. The identification of word-meaning elements, as re and read in reread, to help understand the meaning of a word as a whole; morphemic analysis.


Student Case Studies - Descriptions about specific student, group, or class whose work, test data, classroom behaviors are used for analysis of learning strengths and needs, appropriate instructional strategies, interventions or next steps for the teaching and learning processes. Can be specific to reading needs or more comprehensive information.


Substitution - A category of analysis in a running record or IRI where a student substitute a different word from the text when reading aloud.


Suffix - An affix attached to the end of a base, root, or stem that changing the meaning or grammatical function of the word, as -en added to ox to form oxen.


Syllabication - The division of words into syllables.


Syllable - In phonology, a minimal unit of sequential speech sounds comprised of a vowel sound or a vowel-consonant combination, as Ia!, fba/, lab!, fbabl, etc.


Syntactic Awareness - The cognizance of grammatical patterns or structures, a phase of metalinguistic awareness.


Syntactic Cue - Evidence from knowledge of the rules and patterns of language that aids in the identification of an unknown word from the way it is used in grammatical construction.


Syntax - 1. The study of how sentences are formed and of the grammatical rules that govern their formation. 2. The pattern or structure of a word or order in sentences, clauses, and phrases. Syntax examines the various ways that words combine to create meaning. The direct teaching of syntactic patterns is critical for comprehension of higher-level texts as well as for good writing.


Synthetic Method - A way of teaching beginning reading by starting with word parts or elements, as letters, sounds, or syllables, and later combining them into words.


Systematic Instruction - An organized, sequenced approach to reading instruction that supports students to leam the linguistic elements of English and then experience lessons designed to reinforce that association and its application to word recognition, spelling and reading comprehension in an intentional, deliberate manner.


Think Aloud - (Clark, 1984; Meichenbaum, 1985). Using this strategy, the teacher models aloud for the students the thinking process used when reading or writing. After reading and thinking aloud or while writing in front of the students, the teacher leads a discussion about how certain conclusions were reached about what was read or about how something was written.


TeacherlStudent Conferencing - A short interaction between the student and the teacher during writing. These conferences mainly deal with general content problems and are brief and specific, lasting two to five minutes.


Think-Pair-Share - (Lyman). A cooperative learning strategy where students listen to a question, think of a response, pair to discuss with a neighbor, and share their responses with the whole class.


Tracking of Print -Transitional Spelling - A stage of spelling development where spellers come close to

the conventional spelling of English words but continue to misspell words with irregular spellings. For example, spashal for special or ceter for center.


Visual Discrimination - 1. The process of perceiving similarities and differences in stimuli by sight. 2. The ability to engage in such a process.


Vowel - A voiced speech sound made without stoppage or friction of the air flow as it passes through the vocal tract.


Vowel Cluster - In teaching practice, a sequence of two or more vowel sounds in a word, as in aorta, or a sequence of two or more vowel letters, as oa in boat.


Vowel Controller - The letters r, 1, and, in some phonic systems, w, when the sounds they represent modify an immediately preceding vowel sound in the same syllable, as in fir,fall, saw.


Vowel Digraph - A spelling pattern in which two or more adjoining letters represent a single vowel sound, as eigh, for Ia! in sleigh, ea, for IeI in bread, or aw for IoI in saw.


Web - A graphic organizer used to involve students in thinking about and planning what they will study, leam, read about, or write about within a larger topic. A teacher may begin with a "brainstorming" discussion of topics related to a particular theme and then represent subtopics through the use of a web drawn on the board. Webbing can be used to encourage students to consider when they know about each subtopic and/or what they want to know.


Word Analysis - A general, imprecise label applied to word identification or decoding. Word Attack - The process used to decode words (see Decoding).


Word Attack Skills Instruction - Direct instruction of decoding skills and of structural elements, including prefixes, suffixes, and roots (language of AB 1806).

Word Families - Groups of words rhyme or include the same ending sounds. For example, the "-ad family" includes sad, fad, mad, had, pad, rad.


Word Identification - The process of determining the pronunciation and some degree of meaning from a word in written or printed form.


Word Play - A child's manipulation of sounds and words for purposes of language exploration and practice or for pleasure (using alliteration, creating rhymes, singing songs, clapping syllables, etc.).


Word Recognition - The process of determining the pronunciation and some degree of meaning from a word in written or printed form.


Word Sorts - A basic word study routine in which students group words into categories.


Word Study - An approach to instruction in phonics, spelling, word recognition, and vocabulary.


Word Wall - (Cunningham, 1991). A wall of other surface in the classroom where words students are learning or have mastered are posted. Word walls may be used to accomplish different goals, such as developing familiarity with word patterns and families, for remembering high frequency/high use words, and for referencing content area vocabulary. Word walls should include words student will need often in their reading and writing and words that are easily confused with other words. Strategies for remembering words, their spellings, and their meanings are discussed as words are added to the wall.


Writer's Workshop - A stable, predictable format for writing that balances instruction and modeling with adequate time for composing, sharing and publishing. A constant, sustained time for writing is set aside each day. Through modeled writing and discussion about it, students learn about the recursive nature of the writing process.


Writing Process - The process by which a piece of writing is completed for publication, involving prewriting, drafting, revising, editing and publishing.