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  • Hi! Brian Dempsey here, and I just wanted to make a quick video to

  • address a couple things that came up in a discussion on Facebook

  • about reading and becoming a better reader.

  • And so as we kinda went through this thread

  • online, we were sharing some tips and ideas

  • about how to improve our reading comprehension,

  • and so I thought I would share a few things that I do

  • and maybe this will be a help to you.

  • Number one when you read a book, and by the way we will

  • title this video 10 tips to improve your reading comprehension,

  • and so number one is from

  • Benjamin Franklin himself and what he said was never read a book

  • without a pen in hand and so hmm... well, I actually take that to heart.

  • I hardly walk to a mailbox without having a book

  • and a pen, and so hmm... if you have a pen in your hand,

  • no matter what you're reading you have the opportunity to

  • underline, highlight...personally I like to

  • scribble, circle, argue with the author. If you read in the

  • in columns in my book, sometimes I write, well that's a great point

  • or you're a blooming idiot or whatever. But I

  • I really interact with the author

  • as I write in book. And some people I know it makes your skin crawl

  • to just think other writing a book, but if you want to improve your reading

  • comprehension,

  • the very first thing that I would do is take Benjamin Franklin's advice

  • and never read a book without a pen in your hand.

  • Another thing when we talk about reading comprehension, uh, number two,

  • is read a whole paragraph

  • or a whole section before you

  • go to highlight or underline something.

  • I know sometimes I kinda get ahead of myself and l'll be reading through a book

  • and most of the kinds of books that I read are not...

  • they're not novels and nonfiction books, and so

  • their their little bit more uh... technical

  • or oreinted for study, so uh...

  • so sometimes we will begin reading and the very first line that you see that's

  • interesting, you want to highlight that,

  • and what I found is if you read the entire paragraph first,

  • a lot of times there may be a summary statement or there may be

  • uh a little better information for you to highlight

  • down in the paragraph, rather than just uh breaking up your train of thought.

  • Uh...so you may want to read a whole section first

  • and then go back and find what you want to highlight, and I think that'll help

  • with the some reading comprehension.

  • Another thing that I do

  • uh... in fact I do it a lot is I read out loud.

  • And, hmm, if you read out loud, you will read more slowly

  • than if you read silently, but there are times

  • where uh... by reading out loud by reading with inflection,

  • you were able to have more senses engaged in what you're reading, so

  • you're not just saying it, but you're also

  • hearing what you're reading, and that simply helps with

  • reading comprehension as well. And by the way, I read a study

  • just today about I reading out loud,

  • and the study gave some great insights. One of the things that it mentioned was uh...

  • if people read a list, you know, like a list of

  • items, and one of those

  • items was different than the rest, maybe there was a list of 10 things and

  • it was ten kinds of birds and one or nine kinds of birds

  • and one was a sport, people would tend to remember the sport

  • and they would forget the other nine, and so

  • what it shows is those things that stand out, those things that are somehow

  • different, tend to make up more than impression

  • in our brain, so a lot of times what I'll do is if I'm reading

  • and I come across the paragraph that, you know, is just a really solid, something I really

  • wanna get,

  • I'll stop, and I'll read that out loud out, and it really helps to set it apart

  • in my thinking, so there are times where you can read out loud.

  • So, never read a book or yeah never read a book without a pen in your hand,

  • read a whole paragraph per section before you go through and highlight or

  • underline

  • at times read out loud, and then also

  • uh... read silently. You know if we're gonna read out loud sometimes, sometimes we wanna read

  • silently.

  • And I would encourage you: if you do this when we're talking about reading

  • comprehension

  • read with a pencil read with a pen and simply

  • check, you know, as you see something that stands out or you see something interesting

  • simple put a little check in the margin, and that way you can keep reading.

  • This gives you the big picture a book, and then you can go back through

  • and look in and pay attention later to some other things that you

  • you checked but uh... that will help improve your

  • comprehension. This next one, I think is, uh, something a lot of people just don't do.

  • And when you're, you're reading to study, when you're reading and it's something

  • that you really want to comprehend, its not just enjoyment,

  • uh...something that I do, uh... often, in fact it probably makes me look pretty

  • silly for

  • somebody looking in my office or maybe I'm driving down the

  • the road, but if I read something, I'll

  • stop at the end of the paragraph or at the end of the section

  • and I'll think through it in my mind.

  • And sometimes I leave it talk through it out loud, as if I'm explaining

  • what I've read to someone. Umm, if you can formulate your thinking enough to be

  • able to communicate that

  • to someone else, then it's just gonna

  • increase your comprehension. And if you do that throughout the book,

  • if you do that throughout your, um, study,

  • its... its going to help us significant.. significantly.

  • So, um... so, never read a book without a pen in your hand, read the whole paragraph first,

  • at times read out loud, other time read silently, and simply check things that

  • are important,

  • explain what you read.

  • And then, um, this comes from a chapter in a book that I'm going to recommend here in just a

  • moment, but...

  • learn to X-ray a book. When we're talking about reading comprehension,

  • recognize that it's okay not to read

  • the entire book. Uh, in fact there are lots of books that I buy,

  • that I skim through the table of contents, I look at the things that

  • are going to be important to me, especially if it's a compilation,

  • and I pick and choose the the sections of the book that I'm going to read,

  • and it took me awhile to not feel guilty about not reading the whole book

  • and only reading parts of it, but by doing that, by being more selective,

  • I was able to benefit much more

  • then if I simply labored through

  • some things that presented information that at the time I just

  • wasn't interested in.

  • So learn to pay attention to the table of contents

  • and really pick out the areas that you want to

  • read. Also something that I tend to do

  • is pay attention to summary

  • words, and summary words are things like, um,

  • "therefore" or "as a result" or "in conclusion,"

  • and make sure that when you see that,

  • you were able, in your mind, to know what his argument was, what the author's

  • argument was before he got to a summary,

  • because if you see a summary word and you don't understand the previous argument,

  • then you're not really comprehending that, so I usually mark

  • those kinda summary word. I'll underlined noun

  • and I'll go back and make sure that I know what the points are

  • that are leading up to the author's conclusion.

  • And sometimes we find that, you know, he's made some kind a logical fallacy,

  • and really the points that he's brought forth can lead to other conclusions or

  • maybe it's simply not

  • conclusiveAlso

  • something that I would encourage you to do is

  • use highlighters or circle and underline

  • key phrases in a book. I'll tell you I do that

  • Here's an example of a book that I read just this past week,

  • and you can see that, boy, I highlight

  • and then you know I was reading and this particular book is on pluralism.

  • And so right here's the word tolerance,

  • and then I will underline the key phrases or the key words

  • within a sentence, and that really helps to

  • to stand out, and it also helps when I highlight and I underline,

  • when I finish a book before I simply put it down to move on to the next thing

  • I typically pick it back up and go page for page and just

  • look back through it and I will read what I've highlighted.

  • I just don't understand folks personally who can read a book

  • and they don't mark in it, they don't write in it, and

  • then you know maybe the one key thought, or maybe one thing that really stood out,

  • it's simply lost in their two or three or four hundred-page book,

  • and they can't open it up and go back and find that,

  • and so I would encourage you to use highlighter and a pen.

  • Also,

  • when it comes to reading comprehension, mark words

  • that you don't know. This is something that is

  • is going to help increase your vocabulary. I recently read

  • just an absolutely outstanding book called "The Professor

  • and The Madman," and if you can see the subtitle,

  • here the subtitle is "A tale of murder,

  • insanity, and the making of the Oxford English Dictionary,"

  • so it is a book about the making

  • up the dictionary, so I wasn't too surprised

  • when there were 35 or 40 words

  • in the first, you know, how many chapters of this book that I didn't know,

  • but I went through and circle every single solitary word I didn't know,

  • and when I was done, because this is not on the Kindle

  • I simply went to dictionary.com and

  • spend a little bit of time and looked up some of these words and have added a

  • couple of 'em

  • to my vocabulary. A few of these or a little archaic

  • but anyway, fantastic thing to do, circle words

  • that you don't know. Finally, the last

  • is read this book

  • "How to Read a Book," and, uh, by Mortimer Adler

  • and Charles Van Doren, absolutely outstanding.

  • And one of the things that this does

  • is it helps you to

  • be able to read multiple works and compare them.

  • It has the tip about X-raying a book

  • and kinda understanding the author’s purpose and goal, and

  • being able to evaluate a book to see it's something that

  • you want to read to begin with. So,

  • let's just review those ten tips real quick, 'cause I didn't number them throughout.

  • Number one, never read a book without a pen in your hand.

  • Number two, read a whole paragraph

  • before you go through and highlight or

  • underline anything, and that way you get the bigger context, and

  • sometimes can find the conclusions. At times when you need to

  • read out loud, you read more slowly, but it will help you to remember that as you

  • engage your senses.

  • Also, read silently, and as you read silently,

  • simply use a pencil and just check

  • key paragraph, so you want to go back and read later. Explain

  • what you read. Learn to X-ray a book and realize you don't have to

  • read every single chapter.

  • Pay attention to summary words: therefore, as a result

  • in conclusion. Circle and underlined key

  • words and phrases in a sentence or in a paragraph.

  • Mark words that you don't know and look them up.

  • Again, if you have a (Kindle), just double click and it pops up the dictionary, there.

  • And then finally, read "How to Read a Book". I hope these tips are helpful to you

  • and happy reading.

Hi! Brian Dempsey here, and I just wanted to make a quick video to

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A2 US TOEIC read reading comprehension read book paragraph

10 Tips to Improve Your Reading Comprehension

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    Tim posted on 2017/05/24
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