I want to share an interactive tool here that I developed as a way to show how young readers are coordinating complex reading processes as they learn to read. Radar charts, a standard feature in Excel spreadsheets, will help you visually display the information readers are actually using:
- meaning cues: reader miscued, trying to make sense considering the story, picture cues if any, and avoiding nonsense words
- structure cues: reader miscued, trying to make the word sound right to fit the expected part of speech (noun, verb, pronoun, possessive, past, present, or future tense, plurals, etc.)
- visual cues: reader miscued, trying to match the letters in the word printed on the page
Knowing the kinds of cues that a reader uses, and the kinds of cues that a reader overlooks, can help you target your teaching. On the radar chart below, a lopsided corner will lean or stretch out toward the reader's "go-to" cueing systems used more often, pointing to areas of strength or even overuse. Targeted minilessons can help readers notice the kind of cues they are missing, whether meaning, structure, or visual cues.
The chart below works with running records to allow teachers to quickly see if readers are effectively coordinating three kinds of cues as they read a passage. If you know how to conduct a running record (e.g., DRA, Reading Recovery, Fountas & Pinnell), you can instantly visualize your data here and create your own radar chart by typing each of the MSV percentages into the yellow cells in the chart below. The tool here is interactive in real time: enter your scores in the yellow boxes and the chart below changes instantly.
© 2013 Karen Wohlwend
You can download your graph by clicking the download icon above.