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LESSON I

PREVIEWING AND PREDICTING


A. Previewing
Previewing is an important part of the pre-reading process because it helps to
engage and develop the background knowledge for readers of all ages. It aids them
in making predictions about the text and can attract their interest, thereby
increasing their motivation to read. In addition, previewing allows readers to focus
their reading on key information. Previewing may provide clues about the text
structure, preparing the reader to mentally organize the new information. After
previewing, the reader is ready to better comprehend the text. This is particularly
true for readers who have limited literacy skills.
Previewing a book
When you are selecting a book, there are many parts that you can look at before you
start to read. These parts will give you information about the book.
1.
2.
3.
4.

Front cover (include title, the author, and illustration)


title page (includes the title, author, illustrator, publisher)
table of content (includes the chapter titles)
back cover (includes a recommendation that tells what the book is about)

Activity 1
Preview the following novel covers and write the information you get
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Previewing a passage/a text


A preview may vary based on the type of text. A preview of a narrative text might
include looking at the cover and title, reading the "teaser" on the back book cover,
looking at pictures, and/or noticing chapter names. A preview of an expository text
could also include attention to text features such as headings and subheadings,
maps and charts, picture captions, and featured vocabulary. A preview of a science
text might focus on tables or charts that will be the key to understanding the text,
while a preview of a history text might include noting the author and how the
author's perspective might affect the point of view of the text.
There are several things you can do to preview a passage:
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Look at the title. (Make a prediction about what you think the article or text will
be about)
Who is the author? (What credentials does the author have? What gender?)
What pictures are in the article? Describe them (What clues do these pictures
give you about the topic of the article?)
What is the structure of the article? (How is article arranged? Short paragraphs?
Long paragraph? Introduction? Conclusion?)
Read the first and the last paragraph. (What clues does this give you to what
the article might be about? What ideas does the article seem to be focusing on?)

Read the following titles and headings. Then write down the likely content of
each book or article. Compare your work with your partners.
1. PC keyboards is dirtier than toilet seats
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2. Protecting Antarctica from Tourism


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3. Human noise pollution, a danger to sea life


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4. Many people think twice about doctors sticking needles in them. However,
research into acupuncture might change peoples opinions. A new study into
this ancient Chinese therapy shows it is better than usual hospital treatments at
relieving back pain.
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5. Most people in the United States speak only one language: English. They do not
learn to speak a second language. High schools teach languages but very few
students learn to speak well. Why dont Americans speak other languages?
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B. Predicting the next idea


Predicting means telling what will happen. The readers will a better reader if you
predict. As you read, guess what will happen.

Read the sentence. Then tell which idea comes next.


1. There were many good shows on TV last night. The Smith family stayed home.
a. They turned off the TV and went to bed early.
b. The only interesting show was about traveling by bicycle.
c. They saw a play, a music show, and the news.
2. John and Alice Babson are not happy with school in their town.
a. Their children love to go to school.
b. The classes are very crowded.
c. It is a beautiful building.
3. The roads were covered with ice and were very dangerous today.
a. Sam drove home quickly.
b. Sam took a long time to drive home.
c. San enjoyed driving home.
4. Boston is a nice place to live in, but New York City is more fun.
a. New York is a dangerous city.
b. There are many interesting things to do in New York.
c. There are no good restaurants in New York.
5. Fly Happy Time Airlines! Take an exciting trip to Holiday Island.
a. This trip is very expensive.
b. Holiday Island has warm, sunny weather.
c. Happy Time Airlines is never on time.
6. Alex had trouble falling asleep last night. He was awake until 3 a.m.
a. This morning, he feels rested and ready to work.
b. This morning, he is very hungry.
c. This morning, he feels very tired.
7. Dr. Harrold was busy with his patients all day. He didnt have time for lunch.
a. He may not be hungry at dinner time.
b. He had a very easy day.
c. He will be very hungry at dinner time.
8. Judy and Alan moved to anew apartment near the university.
a. Now they need a car to drive to class.
b. Now they can walk to class every day.
c. Now they will not be near the university library.
9. Max works all day in a shoe store. At night, he takes business classes at the
university.
a. Max wants to have his own business some day.
b. Max has lots of free time.
c. Max is not very busy.

10. Eat at Joes dinner! We serve breakfast from 6 to 10!


a. No one likes the breakfast at Joes!
b. And the breakfast costs only $1.00!
c. The food is cold and the service is slow!

Predict what ideas you will find in the story


Title: Boston: A Good Place to Live
YES

NO

1.

There are many poor people in Boston

2.

The spring flowers are beautiful in Boston

3.

There are many universities in Boston

4.

Jobs are hard to find in the Boston area

5.

Winters in Boston are cold and snowy

6.

Boston City Hall is very beautiful

7.

There are many famous old buildings in downtown

8.

People are not friendly

9.

The Charles River flows by the city. People like to walk along the

YES

NO

river
10. Apartments are very expensive and hard to find

Title: Modern Dentists: How They Can Help You

1.

Dentists hurt your teeth

2.

Dentists have many new machines

3.

Some dentists play the radio for their patients

4.

Some dentists will pull out all your teeth

5.

A nurse cleans your teeth at the dentists office

6.

The dentists office is very comfortable

7.

Dentists want everyone to have healthy teeth

8.

A visit to the dentist is too expensive

9.

The dentist may x-ray your teeth

10. Modern dentists must study for many years

What ideas do you predict next from the following heading?

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