During the experiment that was held in order to analyze the accuracy, comprehension, and fluency in reading, a 7-year old girl L.H. was asked to read a fiction and a nonfiction text. L.H. is in the first grade. The girl attends the Bilingual Bicultural School № M182 in East Harlem, and her reading level is C. According to the girl’s mother, L.H. have difficulties in reading comprehension and fluency. The mother expects her daughter to increase the reading level to two or three points by the end of the year. The running record was conducted in order to analyze the current level of the child.
The first part of the experiment was devoted to the reading of a fiction book Socks, written by Bill Hamilton. The content of the book was easy for child’s comprehension. It was about the cat named Socks, who loved to sleep, and the little girl, who wanted to wake it up. At first, L.H. showed an accuracy while reading, but after two pages the girl started to confuse some words. For example, she confused the name of the cat, which is Socks, with the personal pronoun “She”, and also such words as “was” and “went”, “by” and “my”. The girl also added a few words to the text or reversed them. There was a line in the text where L.H. has read “I can wake up Socks” instead of “I can wake Socks up”. However, she was able to correct herself. The level of fluency was moderate, as the girl started reading the book from primarily two-word phrases with some three and four-word groups, and continued to read the book word by word. In order to analyze the level of comprehension, the child was asked to answer on key understanding types of questions. The learner was expected to reproduce the information about what she had read, but the feedback was limited and incomplete. L.H. has mentioned the cat and its passion for sleeping, but she did not mention the little girl and her attempts. Obviously, the learner has paid more attention to the ending of the story, as she was able to provide the interviewer with more information. L.H. explained that the girl has woken Socks up by using food at the end of the story. Generally, the learner reflected the very limited understanding of the text. She mentioned a few facts or ideas but did not express the most important information.
The second part of the experiment was devoted to the reading of a non-fiction book Shopping by Sarah Jackson. This informational text explained how a young boy has helped his mother to buy food at the market. The book was understandable for the child, as L. H. usually helps her mother to pick groceries while shopping. As long as the girl was interested in the topic, she started reading easily. However, the learner has lost concentration and started to make mistakes. She confused such words as “cart” and “cat”, and also had difficulties in pronouncing certain words, for example, bananas or oranges. The level of fluency was not very high in this case, as L.H. paused after reading two words and continued to read word by word. The key understanding types of questions, which were asked in order to get the level of the reader’s comprehension, have shown that the amount of information achieved from the text was limited. L.H. was able to provide the list of the items that were bought, such as apples, bananas, milk, carrots, tomatoes, bread, and oranges. Although the girl showed her inability to paraphrase, she was able to make conclusions. The learner stated that the boy liked to help his mom to do shopping and said that she does the same with her mom. L.H. used her personal experience in order to explain the text.
The results of an investigation show that the child has a higher level of accuracy and comprehension when the text is connected with her own life experience. The implications of such strategy are that this child will pay less attention to the unfamiliar topics in the future and might not be able to read with fluency. It is recommended to develop the child’s way of thinking and to teach her to give details when responding to a text. It is necessary to improve the reading level of L.H. so that she could meet the end-of-the-year expectations.