Tag Archives: still images

Curricular considerations: Limited type/aspect of comprehension

Title Curricular considerations: Limited type/aspect of comprehension
App Name Reading Comprehension Level 1 Passages
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/kids-reading-comprehension/id494472230?mt=8
App Maker Angela Reed
Screenshot *
General Description Readers choose from a “bookshelf” of short narrative and informational texts. They click to open the book and must read the text independently. There is no text-to-speech feature in this app. After reading the text, students answer 4 multiple choice questions about the text. The app is designed for early reader in Kindergarten or Grade 1.
Screenshot context This screenshot shows a MC question that requires students to identify a main idea in the text. When readers tap an option, a red circle or a green circle appears, depending on whether the choice is correct. Though it’s not shown in this image, an encouraging phrase such as “Good Job!” or “Well Done!” also appears when the answer is correct. If the answer is incorrect, “Sorry!” appears to prompt the reader to try again.
Explanation and/or commentary The name of this app suggests a specific focus on reading comprehension. However, the app includes very few features that would teach comprehension strategies or skills (Pressley & Afflerbach, 1995; Afflerbach, Pearson & Paris, 2008). Vocabulary words are not hyperlinked to a dictionary; students cannot hear difficult words read aloud. Texts are static. Questions are usually very literal and worded closely to the initial text. Students learn to identify and match key words in the story and in the questions but they are not required to make inferences about story meaning, or word meaning based on context. There is an image to support comprehension with each text, but there are no MC questions related to the images or how they connect to the story. This app does measure students’ ability to answer MC questions. Questions do focus on the main ideas in the text. Teachers can check students’ scores for each text but scores should be interpreted as a very limited measure of students’ emergent comprehension skills and strategies.