This isn’t going to be a day-by-day blog about my reading retraining with Lindamood-Bell! But I learnt more about one of the concepts: the main idea. And I learnt about which stories aid recall well.
To recap: the steps in learning reading comprehension are
- Read a sentence or multiple sentences (I read via the document camera, or the clinician reads to me)
- Create a picture that represents the sentence or multiple sentences, a picture that can be static, morphing from one image to another, and moving
- At the end of the one-paragraph story, describe each picture in sequence
- Then give a word summary based off those pictures
- Answer high thinking order questions
- Give the main idea.
The main idea is tough. It’s gotta be one sentence, but not a long, verbose, wordy sentence with lots and lots of conjunctions and subjunctive phrases. It’s gotta be short. My clinician suggested thinking of three main points, in sequence, and creating one short sentence with those three points. Think of the main idea as the first sentence of an essay that summarizes what is to come. My second kick at the main idea of the last full story we did worked better. It was short. I still wasn’t sure about it, but she was satisfied and explained why it worked.
We had seven minutes left in my two-hour time; my clinician decided on a gross jungle spider story. She read the first sentences; that was enough for me. Nightmares! And boy, was the imagery vivid in my mind. The image developed whole new levels of action not in the story, like big, black hairy spiders crawl-running out of the ground, growing huger than tree trunks, and attacking the men coming to dig them up and fry them. In other words, gross stories kickstart the creation of images. Blander stories require more effort to draw pictures in my mind when all I see are the words.