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Make your own readers for young learners, part 2


by Terry Phillips


Continued from Part 1


Show the first ‘page’ of the story.  Use handouts or, even better, display on a smartboard. Read the sentences aloud. Get the children to read along after one or two repetitions.


Jack and his mother are very poor. 

They have one goat.

Jack goes to the market.


Check comprehension, focusing on truth value. Make statements, using language from the reader, to check understanding of the truth of the statement to elicit Yes/No or a correction. Ideally make absurd statements, to make the children laugh – the greatest test of comprehension, e.g. Jack sells his mother. You can also usefully check reading and comprehension by showing the sentences with the final word missing. You can give out the flashcards from the earlier activity and the children must find and hold up the correct word. Don’t ask comprehension questions, e.g. Does Jack go to the market? because such questions pose challenges which are irrelevant to the purpose of class readers.


Jack and his mother are very rich. 

They have one dog.

Jack goes to the shop.


Jack and his mother are very …. 

They have one ….

Jack goes to the ….


Check understanding of the whole narrative. Reading is all about prediction and hypothesis checking – being ahead of the text. Show the children two sentences and ask: What is the next sentence in the story? The children read the two sentences, discuss and choose. Do not confirm or correct. Then show them the next page to check their predictions.


[page 1]

Jack and his mother are very poor. 

They have one goat.

Jack goes to the market.


What is the next sentence in the story?

  1. Jack buys a goat.
  2. Jack sells the goat.


[page 2]

Jack sells the goat.

He gets three beans.



Get the children to retell the story with puppets or through role play. The children make hand puppets or masks of the characters in the story – and items, like the beanstalk. Children take it in turns to read sentences or pages from the story and the other children move the puppets or role play the story.


So it’s as simple as that! Make your own readers… or you could buy the Innova Graded Readers!


Terry Phillips is the Business Development Director of Innova Press Ltd and the reteller of fables and fairy stories in the Innova Graded Readers series.


Find Innova Press Readers and other ways to get children reading and enjoying it at!


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