Expression with Ease helps students who are
- overly talkative and have difficulty getting to the point
- painfully shy and don’t speak up in class
- understand what they are reading but can’t formulate their thoughts
- finished with speech and language therapy but still struggle with language delays
Expression with Ease was developed at The Reading Clinic in response to working with so many children who weren’t quite ready to tackle reading comprehension because their verbal expression was too weak. Students’ responses to questions would require repeating the questions, prompts for answers, choices to pick from and was a painful process. We could tell that some kids understood what they were reading, but couldn’t explain it because they could follow written directions or pick the correct idea, but could not give directions or formulate an answer independently. In some cases, parents recognize that their kids are following a story but just can’t explain it. Other kids work on expression and then continue on to reading comprehension.
Expression with Ease strengthens
- Structured Story Telling
- Reading Comprehension
Students with expressive language issues often have difficulty acquiring vocabulary because they are not able to visualize what a word looks like. Our they may have an impressive vocabulary that they are unable to use. Expression with Ease helps students learn to acquire and use their vocabulary in everyday situations.
We also focus on the must-know words for communication and reading comprehension – prepositions, colors, moods and action verbs. We cover content knowledge for basic skill areas – geography, time concepts, measurement, and timelines. Students develop a rich inventory of visual images and flexibility with accessing these critical concepts.
Students practice giving and following directions. Through this activity, students unlock the fundamental idea of communication – that their words are creating meaning for the listener. Students who struggle with verbal expression will often gesture to communicate – we help them use their words.
Some students need support in having a conversation. We model conversations and help them understand how to respond appropriately and ask relevant questions. We also help students learn how to verbally handle frustration and misunderstandings.
Structured Story Telling practice
Students practice structured storytelling to develop organized thinking and expression. Storytelling allows the student to understand the beginning, middle and end of a story which in turns prepares them for working on reading comprehension. It also introduces the difference between a main idea and details and the importance of staying on topic. Students have a chance to explore and understand cause and effect and character motivation.
Reading Comprehension Preparation
The goal of the Expression with Ease is to help students connecting spoken language to the written word. We begin the process using picture prompts. Students use these to tell a story and then make predictions and inferences from the story. They practice forming a main idea that captures the picture in one sentence. Once the foundational pieces are in place from the picture prompt, students begin making mental movies from words. Some students then continue to Comprehension with Ease or Writing with Ease.