Pre-reading Activities: A Neglected Reading Stage in the Greek as a Second Language Class

By Martha Vazaka.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

In previous years, many researchers have examined the importance of the pre-reading stage in the development of reading skills. This paper, after a brief presentation of the recent theories on what adept readers do when they read and what processes take place in reading, focuses on the learner-centered approach to the teaching of reading skills and on the importance of pre-reading activities. In most cases, a common problem that students experience is the feeling that they do not know anything concerning the subject they are reading about. The truth is that the problem may not actually be a lack of background knowledge, but rather the failure to activate that knowledge. Pre-reading activities, which are based on the schema theory, may offer a solution to this problem, because they elicit readers’ prior knowledge and build on this background information. This paper suggests strategies for the pre-reading stage, with examples, and illustrates how these examples and techniques can help to promote critical thinking. The paper also presents the findings of research, which took place in the School of Modern Greek at Aristotle University in Thessaloniki in autumn 2007, which aimed to examine the impact of the pre-reading stage on learners. The findings indicated that the pre-reading activities which are usually totally neglected in the teaching of Modern Greek, can actually motivate learners to read, and, at the same time, enhance and promote their reading comprehension. The purpose of this paper is to show how important and helpful the pre-reading stage is when it comes to the teaching of Greek as a second language.

Keywords: Greek, Language, Learning

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 12, pp.45-54. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 810.148KB).

Martha Vazaka

Aristotle University, Athens, Greece

Mrs. Martha Vazaka holds a BA degree from the School of Philosophy, Department of Modern Greek and Medieval Studies in Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. She also holds an MA in Linguistics from the University of ParisIII, Sorbonne Nouvelle, France. She has been teaching Modern Greek at the School of Modern Greek in Aristotle University since 1998. In 2006 she has published a book titled Reading Strategies, 25 texts for advanced students of Greek as a Foreign Language by Metehmio Publishers.

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