Designing Content-Area Text Sets [PDF] by William E. Lewis and John Z. Strong

[I]n this chapter we provide you with a framework for designing integrated sets of related texts that not only provide your students increased reading volume but also give them the critical background knowledge needed to make complex texts accessible. Additionally, these sets create opportunities for students to make connections between texts, therefore extending their understanding of disciplinary concepts. We begin this chapter by providing an expanded definition of text and an explanation of why combining texts is important for disciplinary instruction. We then discuss comprehension theory and how integrated text sets, situated within a clear B-D-A reading framework, provide the critical background knowledge and strategic support needed to read and understand challenging disciplinary texts. We then provide a clear structure and content-specific examples for choosing these texts—multimedia, informational, young adult, websites, and visuals—that build both background knowledge and motivation, allow for differentiation, and expand student understanding of key disciplinary concepts.

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Originally published in Literary Instruction with Disciplinary Texts: Strategies for Grades 6—12 by William E. Lewis and John Z. Strong. 


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