The OPEN Talk Episode entitled “Para-Paraan Yan!” was held on 19 May 2021 from 6:00 to 7:00 PM via live streaming. This OPEN Talk episode featured another discussion on teaching reading during remote learning. It focused on teaching reading for adolescent learners, specifically developing readers and students from Grade 3 onwards. 

Since this is part two of  the episode on teaching reading in remote learning, the same set of resource speakers were invited: Ms. Michelle Agas, a Teacher, Storyteller, and Children’s Show Host; and Ms. Julie Weygan-Aparato, Program Lead and Teacher at Interactive Children’s Literacy Program. The moderator of the Open Talk was Assoc. Prof. Portia Padilla of UP Diliman College of Education, while Ms. Charlene Mina also served as the host. 

Left to Right: Ms. Julie Weygan-Aparato, Assoc. Prof. Portia Padilla, and Ms. Michelle Agas

Left to Right: Ms. Julie Weygan-Aparato, Assoc. Prof. Portia Padilla, and Ms. Michelle Agas

Dr. Padilla gave a short review of what was shared by the resource persons in the first part of the “Para-paraan Yan.”  She then asked the speakers to share what are the skills needed for developmental readers which are children from Grade 3 and above. She defined reading fluency as the ability to read accurately, quickly and with proper expression. 

Teacher Julie shared that to help developmental readers to develop their fluency in reading, storytelling or reader’s theater is one of the ways she uses as it engages both teachers and students. She added that she holds one-on-one online coaching with students who need help in reading and interpreting the script. The sessions are short and take only 10-15 minutes per student. She shared one informal gauge of the effectiveness of teaching reading was when she observed her students pass books among each other, tell the stories, and read the dialogues among themselves.

Ms. Julie Weygan-Aparato and her story telling activity

Ms. Julie Weygan-Aparato and her story telling activity

Teacher Michelle shared that developmental readers are expected to read independently and fluency development activities help them process what they read correctly, and eventually improve reading comprehension and writing skills. One example she shared to improve fluency among developmental readers is by cutting the texts into chunks or in short paragraphs, and letting the children answer questions or draw interpretations about the paragraph. She also gives writing activities that help students process what they have read.

Ms. Michelle Agas sharing her example of chunking reading strategy

Ms. Michelle Agas sharing her example of chunking reading strategy

Dr. Padilla asked what areas of reading fluency are the most challenging in developmental reading. Teacher Michelle shared that she finds development readers and even high school students struggle with writing composition. The strategy of chunking texts in  short paragraphs helps the children with this challenge. 

Teacher Julie agreed that writing is a struggle among the children. A way to help them is to let them be creative. She also makes the children recite orally before requiring them to write. Structure and editing comes last. She reminded that activities would consider the capabilities of the students. Teacher  Julie agrees with Teacher Michelle that feedback is important in learning. What Teacher  Michelle does is that she asks the students to take photos of their output and send it to her. After which, she will send these outputs back to the students with her feedback and comments.  What Teacher  Julie does is aside from the photo strategy, she individually records her feedback and sends this to   each student. This is helpful since it adds to the “face-to-face” feel of giving feedback. 

Dr. Padilla agreed that small personal touch especially in online learning has a great impact on the student. She asked the resource persons some questions, some from the live viewers. Both teachers were able to answer and explain clearly the answers to the questions, especially the relationship between reading and writing. 

This episode of OPEN Talk is available on the UPOU Networks Website, the UPOU Youtube Channel and the UPOU Networks Facebook Page

Written by Moireen Espinosa and Anna Cañas-Llamas

Edited by Joane V. Serrano

Screen Capture by Moireen Espinosa