About Julie Coiro
Building Stronger Connections to Text 
with Electronic Experiences

Connecticut Reading Association Conference, November 14, 2002

Presenter: Julie Coiro, M. Ed. Literacy & Technology Specialist

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Good readers are quite adept at making connections between what they read and themselves, other texts and the world around them.  Teachers using technology can design learning environments that provide opportunities to make these connections even stronger.  In this hour, we will explore how the right mix of best practices in literacy instruction can be combined with some of the newest electronic tools to spark the interest of strong readers while supporting the needs of struggling readers of all ages.  Multimedia anticipation guides, electronic graphic organizers, online interviews with authors, and interactive discussion boards for students bring new meaning to how students can collaboratively construct responses to fiction and non-fiction and share their creative ideas with others around the world.
Homes in the Mind...
Good readers think about things they already know and experiences that they've had to help them better understand new things that they read about in a book. To encourage all readers to relate unfamiliar text to their prior world knowledge and/or personal experiences, we can provide opportunities for students to make four special types of connections in their minds:

This part reminds me of a time when I ...


This book/character/event is a lot like/very different than _______ because ... 


I once heard about ...

This author seems to write/know an awful lot about .... 

Source: Adapted from Keene & Zimmermann (1997). Mosaic of Thought, Teaching Comprehension in a Reader's Workshop: Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. (Chapter 4); see also the new Mosaic Listserv Website for interactive resources
And for those held accountable by Connecticut Mastery Test Guidelines for Reading...