Do you have those students that are really good at word recognition skills but their reading comprehension skill are significantly deficient? 
Students with autism commonly have difficulty with comprehension.  They are excellent word callers often reading well above their reading level.  Many students can have a word recognition grade equivalent commensurate to their grade levels, yet have a comprehenion grade level equivalent one, two or even three grade levels below their word recognition levels. In fact, often with students I have worked with, its amazing to me how they figure out exactly which words are which. They just seem to know them. Almost like MAGIC!  Well we know it isn't magic but how do we help these students? Comprehension is the substance of reading. Without that-are they truly reading? NO!
We need to acknowledge the strength they have in word recognition while improving the deficient skills in reading comprehension.
I use many ways in my classroom. I would love to hear about how you tackle this issue as well. What stratagies do you use? What  materials and activities do you use to help YOUR students master reading comprehension?
Here are some favorites of mine that I use.
Direct Instruction
Direct Instruction is breaking down skills manageable tasks in order that they can be presented through demonstration repeated action until the task is learned. Its using simple direct language easy for the students to grasp and understand. The tasks are successfully taught when they are are generalized outside the lesson environment. Many Direct Instruction (DI) materials have built in repetitions and repetitive language that make it easy for students with disabilities to master. Commericial products such as the SRA line of materials that incorporate Direct Instruction have proven highly successful and are just one of many. You can check out their lines of products at McGraw Hill SRA Direct Instruction
Autism & PDD Picture Stories
Another product that I have used successfully many times is Autism & PDD Picture Stories. You can find them at Linguisystems.  This set is comprised of very simplified stories about the characters Matt and Molly. There are sets of questions to accompany the stories along with Question prompting cards such was WH words and YES/NO cards.
Teacher Made Materials
Even with great commercial products out there, sometimes I find they are not addressing exactly what I need to work on with a student. So having started creating products to sell, I'm setting out on making a simple sentence comprehension activity. Its going to look something like this.

I am going to test this activity in class this week then I will have it available as a freebie next Monday. This set can be used as you see it as a worksheet. It could also be cut apart and laminated, then the answer cards at the bottom and the box in the question card can have velcro attached to it so the students could attach the answers they select to the answer box.
I would love to hear your thoughts on what you use for comprehension or if something like this would work for you?
In the meantime, please enjoy the FREEBIE for Marvelous Monday!  Tomorrow's Marvelous Monday won't be so great without my kiddos as I have a teacher work day to do county Data Day. But, then it WILL BE MARVELOUS for them as THEY have the day OFF!
Check out other freebies at Manic Monday

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday


  1. Very nice! I like the idea of the simple sentence comprehension.

  2. Did you ever make these?? This format is exactly what I’ve been looking for!