Analysis of Theoretical Framework
Give high school students the latest vampire versus werewolf love saga and they will be able to discuss every nuance of the book for hours, ask them to read a section from their science textbook and summarize it and you will become the unfortunate recipient of whining at its finest. It is no secret to teachers that students experience difficulties reading and comprehending material presented in textbooks. The question on the mind of most teachers is, how do we help our students comprehend what they are reading? In her dissertation, Constance L. Pearson discusses the issue of student comprehension, the problems that prevent students from understanding content material, and what can be done to aid students in their quest for knowledge.
According to Pearson, there are several reasons students experience difficulties comprehending content material, these reasons range from the text not being written to their level to students’ excitement about reading the material. Pearson identifies the biggest barrier to reading comprehension is the students prior knowledge or their schemata. Pearson goes on to say that in order for students to understand what they are reading they must be able to link it to something they already know. The role of the teacher is to create a tie between what the students know and what she wants them to learn. This idea is rooted in Bartlett’s Schema Theory as it applies to Education, which explains how old knowledge aids in the acquisition of new knowledge.
The theory suggests in regards to reading, that a teacher must first activate the students’ knowledge before reading occurs in order for it to be relevant to the students. According to Pearson, teachers can tap into prior knowledge and boost student comprehension through the use of advance organizers.
According to Pearson, there is overwhelming evidence that advance organizers greatly increase the understanding of content material. Pearson site research...