Tuesday, May 7, 2013

QAR Reading Comprehension Strategy {Tried it Tuesday}

Before I get to the QAR post today I'd like to take just a minute to say thank you to all the wonderful teacher bloggers I've met through this blog. I can't express how much I appreciate you sharing your ideas and classrooms with me and all the comments and support you've given me! I've learned so much through this blog in such a short time and its all because of you - THANK YOU! 

Second, I am thrilled about the TPT sale that starts today. I keep browsing, adding things to my wish list and then moving them to my cart! I'm so excited to shop and get some great new products for next year! 

Now that I've gotten all that off my mind I can tell you about my Tried it Tuesday this week. I'm linking up with Holly at Fourth Grade Flipper to share a reading strategy I've been trying out in my classroom. 

I had the privilege of participating in a grant-funded professional development called Leading in Reading. We met 5 times in the fall and learned about some new strategies we could try in our classroom. The group I was in focused on comprehension strategies and that's how I was introduced to Question Answer Relationships. 

When it came time for the team from my school to choose a strategy to implement we went with QAR;. The strategy is pretty simple. You teach kids that there are 4 basic types of questions: 

1. Right There - you can put your finger on the answer in the text
2. Search and Find - you can put your finger on the answer but you will need to use two or more fingers (answer in more than one place) 
3. Author and Me - this when you use what the author told you and what you know to answer the question (inference, conclusion, etc)
4. On My Own - don't need to read the text to answer the question

Here are some posters we created as I was introducing this strategy. 

To introduce the strategy I asked how we get the answers to questions and we came up with two ways - in our head or in the book - that's where the two categories (and posters) come in. We then read a book called Katie Loves the Kittens by John Himmelman. I used the book to model how I would create questions for the 4 different types. Then, students worked on small passages with partners for several days and finally on their own. 

As you would expect, the Right There and Search and Find questions were pretty easy for students to identify and also create themselves, but the Author and Me questions were much more challenging. We had to spend some extra time on creating our own Author and Me questions, but it was time well spent. I feel like QAR has really helped develop my students' ability to formulate good, "thick" questions. 

As a part of our work with the grant we had to do a pre and post test and we saw a 5% increase in pass rates on the comprehension test after we taught this strategy. I thought that was a pretty good return for a strategy that is easy to teach and the kids really thought it was fun too! 

Have you tried QAR before? Any tips of teaching the strategy and using it in the classroom? 


  1. I've heard so much about QAR but have never tried it. Your success with this system shows me I need to change that. :) It makes so much sense!

    Mrs. Laffin's Laughings

  2. I really like this idea! I'm going to have to find out some more about it!!

    The Bomb-Diggity Classroom

  3. I have heard of this before but do not know anything about it! I am intrigued and would like to explore more. Thank you so much for sharing, Courtney!
    Fourth Grade Flipper

  4. Tried this with my third graders today for an observation lesson. It worked great. I am planning on us
    Sing it for the students to develop higher level thinking questions for their book clubs.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...