to Repair Comprehension and Read Unknown Words


Do your students have difficulty comprehending text they read? Not sure how to help them? Good readers use a variety of strategies to understand text and teachers can model these strategies to help struggling readers.

Two types of fix-up strategies:

  • Word Attack Strategies: These strategies help students read unknown words.

  • Comprehension Fix-up Strategies: These strategies help students read and understand the meaning of unknown phrases and text.



Word Attack Strategies

Students who are learning to read need strategies besides decoding to help them read unknown words.  Decoding is the most common strategy that students use but many words in the English language do not lend themselves to decoding.  Therefore, children need other strategies for reading words.

  1. Look at the pictures.

  2. Try to sound out the word.

  3. Look at the beginning letters.

  4. Look at the ending letters.

  5. Look for a smaller word inside the word.

  6. Skip the word and read to the end of the sentence.

  7. Try to guess! Does your word make sense? Does your guess look like the word?

  8. Use the words around it.

  9. Go back and re-read.

  10. Put another word in it's place.

  11. Look in the dictionary.

  12. Ask a friend or an adult.

Word Attack Strategies Bookmark Word Attack Strategies
from Reading A-Z
Word Attack Strategies
More Ideas Check out  the Fluency Page  


Comprehension Fix-up Strategies

Good readers use strategies to make sense of text.  When comprehension breaks down, readers have a set of strategies to repair comprehension.  Below are a list of strategies readers can use to comprehend text.

Monitoring for Comprehension (Self-monitoring):
Students need to be aware of when their comprehension breaks down. Teachers need to explicitly teach students to be aware of their comprehension as they read.  Once they realize they have lost meaning, they can then begin to apply the following strategies below:

  1. Use picture and/or context clues

  2. Ask questions

  3. Go back & reread

  4. Summarize & Retell

  5. Make predictions

  6. Graphic Organizers

Also look at comprehension strategies section for more ideas on comprehension!


Fixing Comprehension Poster Flow Chart of Comprehension-Monitoring Behaviors Stop, Ask, Fix (Checklist)
Graphic Organizers More coming soon....