Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Every Saturday, Christopher and I go to a reading class. For TWO AND 1/2 HOURS! We don't really like it, but we have to go. 
 It's not that we don't know how to read, or something like that.  This class is helping us read faster, have better comprehension,  and learn note taking and study skills.

I am reading Banner in the Sky and Christopher is reading Lord of the Rings (book 1).   I'd never heard of my book before, and I probably wouldn't have chosen it, but it's a pretty good book so far.    

We read some in the class, but we also have homework.
One thing the teachers have taught us is to use long smooth underlining when we read.  Long smooth underlining is where you extend all of your fingers on your dominant hand and underline the sentence, and move down the page in a zigzag pattern.  (It's easier to understand if you see it).  You are basically using your fingers to guide your eyes. 
 Eye doctors have done studies that show your eyes jump all over the page; they don't focus.  Your fingers are a guide for your eyes.  You aren't supposed to use only one finger though, because it is to "small" for focusing.  I don't really like using the technique,  but it does help me read faster.  (The teachers say we will get used to it). 
 The first time I timed myself to figure out my WPM (words per minute) it was 276.  The second time I timed myself I used long smooth underlining and my WPM was 405.  My fastest speed to date is 432 WPM.

To conduct a timing of your reading:

Choose a full line of text (from left margin to right margin), and count each letter, space, and punctuation mark on that line.  This gives you the number of characters.  Divide the number of characters by 6 and round to the nearest whole number (you don't want a remainder); this is the average words per line.  Once you know the average words per line, time yourself for one minute.  Then count the number of lines you read and multiply that by the average words per line. VOILA! Your WPM!

Leave a comment and tell me what it was.  : )

1 comment:

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