Reading for understanding is an important activity. Some children have difficulty in understanding what they read. They are also unable to understand questions. The aim of this activity is to improve their comprehension skills. This activity encourages them to make use of the information given to draw conclusions.

Tips for parents:

Understand your child. Analyze your child’s answer papers. Has she/he answered the questions well? Understand your child’s difficulties in answering questions. Has he/she omitted to answer some questions? Is her/his answer complete? Has your child answered the questions logically? Sometimes your child is unable to do word problems in maths because of her/his inability to understand the language used in the questions. Ask your child to explain the questions. A good exercise for improving comprehension is to make your child set questions on a passage. Ask your child to prepare questions with : how, how many, how much, what, why, where, when, who, whose, which. When preparing the child for class tests make her/him answer several model question papers. This is very much needed if your child has learning difficulties. Understand the areas where your child doesn’t perform well. Take remedial measures. If your child is studying in English medium school, then comprehension is made difficult because English is not the mother tongue. Make your child strong in her/his mother tongue. Always tell your child to think in mother tongue when faced with comprehension tests. Thinking in mother tongue and translating the passage to the mother tongue would improve your child’s performance in examinations set in English. None of us think in English even after so many years’ exposure to English. If your child cannot read and write her/his mother tongue no problem. Read to your child stories/passages written in the mother tongue. Prepare a list of about 2000 frequently used words in your mother tongue and ask your child to translate these into English. It need not always be written exercises. It can be oral tests. Those parents who are not strong in their mother tongue can take help from mother tongue- English dictionary. Buy a good dictionary. Frequent revision of the list of words is required. Add more words to your list. Your involvement, as a parent, can certainly make a big difference in your child’s performance in school.

Search the net for comprehension exercises.

You will find lots of materials suitable to your child’s level. Search the net for different types of comprehension questions:

  1. Multiple choice questions
  2. Comprehension exercises by grade
  3. Cause and effect, fact and opinion questions
  4. Comprehension making inference etc.