How do they read so fast?!?!?!?!?!?!?!
If you teach English to International students, I am sure you have heard this question many times. International students want to be able to read as quickly as a native English reader reads and still understand the text. However, what most International students do not understand is that many of these readers are not truly reading the entire passage. In fact, the native readers rarely read every word. Instead, native readers will either skim or scan the passage for information needed to answer general questions about the passage.
If you are an international student and you want to be able to read a passage quickly and understand it, learning the skills of skimming and scanning are vital to this goal. Additionally, these skills are very important for your academic success. For example, when you have lengthy reading assignments in your classes, you might have to skim or scan in order to determine the main ideas quickly to discuss the passage with your classmates. Furthermore, these skills can be useful on timed tests such as TOEFL or IELTS.
In the Intermediate Reading Class the past few weeks, we have been practicing these skills. I think many of the students have seen a great deal of progress in their reading and understanding of the text. So, if my students can do it, you can do it also. If you would like more information, check out this useful handout. Happy reading….or skimming / scanning! Whatever you do, just READ, READ, READ!
Check out this link for extra practice and tips on skimming and scanning.