1st Edition

Comprehension Across the Curriculum
Perspectives and Practices K-12

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ISBN 9781606235119
Published February 18, 2010 by Guilford Press
335 Pages

USD $39.00

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Book Description

Successful students use comprehension skills and strategies throughout the school day. In this timely book, leading scholars present innovative ways to support reading comprehension across content areas and the full K–12 grade range. Chapters provide specific, practical guidance for selecting rewarding texts and promoting engagement and understanding in social studies, math, and science, as well as language arts and English classrooms. Cutting-edge theoretical perspectives and research findings are clearly explained. Special attention is given to integrating out-of-school literacies into instruction and developing comprehension in English language learners.

Table of Contents

Introduction, Kathy Ganske and Douglas Fisher

I. Theoretical Perspectives

1. To Understand: The Small Changes That Make a Big Difference, Ellin Keene

2. Comprehension in the Elementary Grades: The Research Base, Kathryn L. Roberts and Nell K. Duke

3. Comprehending in the Subject Areas: The Challenges of Comprehension, Grades 7–12, and What to Do about Them, Elizabeth Birr Moje

II. Classroom and School Applications

4. Comprehension in the Primary Grades, Diane Barone

5. Active Thinking and Engagement: Comprehension in the Intermediate Grades, Kathy Ganske

6. Promoting Comprehension in Middle School and High School: Tapping into Out-of-School Literacies of Our Adolescents, Xiufang Chen and Valarie G. Lee

7. Thinking and Comprehending in the Mathematics Classroom, Douglas Fisher, Nancy Frey, and Heather Anderson

8. Comprehension in Social Studies, Donna Ogle

9. Comprehension Connections to Science, Maria Grant

10. Comprehension Instruction: Using Remix as a Tool for Meaning Making, Diane Lapp and Jesse Gainer

11. Developing Comprehension in English Language Learners: Research and Promising Practices, Diane August and Jennifer Letcher Gray

12. Selecting and Using Nonfiction in Grades K–12 Social Studies and Science, Donna L. Knoell

III. Historical Perspectives

13. The Roots of Reading Comprehension Instruction, P. David Pearson

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Kathy Ganske, PhD, is Research Professor, Retired, in the Department of Teaching and Learning at Vanderbilt University. She has been involved in researching, using, refining, and teaching about word study practices since the 1990s. Dr. Ganske's work is grounded in extensive teaching experience in elementary classrooms. Her recent research interests include vocabulary development during small-group word study instruction and literacy reform in challenging schools. Dr. Ganske is the author, coauthor, or editor of several books, including Word Journeys, Second Edition; Word Sorts and More, Second Edition; Mindful of Words; and Comprehension Across the Curriculum, as well as numerous articles and book chapters.

Douglas Fisher, PhD, is Professor of Language and Literacy Education in the College of Education at San Diego State University and a classroom teacher at Health Sciences High and Middle College in San Diego. He is a recipient of the Celebrate Literacy Award from the International Reading Association, the Paul and Kate Farmer English Journal Writing Award from the National Council of Teachers of English, and a Christa McAuliffe Excellence in Teacher Education Award from the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. Dr. Fisher has published numerous articles on reading and literacy, differentiated instruction, and curriculum design, as well as many books.


"A comprehensive look at comprehension! Ganske and Fisher cover all the bases in this coherent work. From basic research findings to multimodal literacies, from mashups to remix, the contributors offer timely, lively, and forward-looking ways that teachers can support kids' strengths and meet their needs. This is the just-right, big-picture text for college comprehension courses and for school-based staff development that gets everyone on the same page."--Harvey Daniels, PhD, Department of Language, Literacy, and Sociocultural Studies, University of New Mexico

"This wonderful book will provide insight for educators as we look at all K-12 learners to determine how, when, and what to teach in order to promote comprehension. The contributors remind us that comprehension is not only a developed understanding of what is read, but also is part of how students engage with text at each learning stage and in every content area. The book will help teachers and staff developers think about comprehension development on a continuum while maintaining high expectations for every student."--Susan Dalton, MA, Curriculum Coordinator, Littleton (Colorado) Public Schools

"This book lives up to its title. Inservice teachers will find food for thought and classroom-ready strategies for enhancing students’ understanding of text, whether it be print or digital, fiction or nonfiction, and whether their students are native English speakers or English language learners. Preservice teachers will gain insight into what comprehension instruction might look like from a range of perspectives, including cognitive strategy instruction, promoting talk about text, building background knowledge, dealing with text structure, and fostering motivation and engagement. There is something here for everyone."--Ian A. G. Wilkinson, PhD, School of Teaching and Learning, The Ohio State University
"This book includes a broad range of resources: research, advice, and specific activities. The chapters are of uniformly high quality. The book offers something for a wide variety of audiences, including teacher educators, researchers, and teachers. I jumped for joy at the chapters on libraries and trade books--I would urge administrators to look at this material as a complement to the focus on scripted basals and pacing charts."--Robert Calfee, PhD, Graduate School of Education, Stanford University
"Ganske and Fisher are to be commended for presenting such compelling research and recommendations related to comprehension strategy instruction. This book should be in the hands of any preserviceor practicing teacher who is working to enhance students' abilities to read all genres strategically and with deeper understanding."--Michelle L. Huntress, MA, reading strategist, Storm Lake (Iowa) Community Schools