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Lesson Plan

Building Reading Comprehension Through Think-Alouds

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Grades 6 – 8
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Two 45-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Laurie A. Henry, Ph.D.

Laurie A. Henry, Ph.D.

Lexington, Kentucky


International Literacy Association



From Theory to Practice



Studies have shown that the think-aloud strategy improves reading comprehension on tests. Through this lesson, the teacher will model the think-aloud strategy for students. Components of think-alouds will be introduced, as well as type of text interactions. Students will develop the ability to use think-alouds to aid in reading comprehension tasks.

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Baumann, J.F., Jones, L.A., & Seifert-Kessell, N. (1993). Using think alouds to enhance children's comprehension monitoring abilities. The Reading Teacher, 47, 184-193.

  • The intent behind the think-aloud lessons was to help students develop the ability to monitor their reading comprehension and employ strategies to guide or facilitate understanding.

  • Think-alouds require a reader to stop periodically, reflect on how a text is being processed and understood, and relate orally what reading strategies are being employed.


Oster, L. (2001). Using the think-aloud for reading instruction. The Reading Teacher, 55, 64-69.

  • The think-aloud is a technique in which students verbalize their thoughts as they read and thus bring into the open the strategies they are using to understand a text.

  • This metacognitive awareness (being able to think about one's own thinking) is a crucial component of learning, because it enables learners to assess their level of comprehension and adjust their strategies for greater success.

  • Several studies have shown that students who verbalize their reading strategies and thoughts while reading score significantly higher on comprehension tests.


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