The Directed Reading Thinking Activity


 The Directed Reading Thinking Activity is the process of making predictions while the students set their own purposes for the reading. The activity was originally developed by Russell Stauffer in 1969. The two step process encourages speculation and accuracy while reading a passage. The students speculate what the story or passage may be about, and then the students read to support or refute their answers. Making predictions are motivating and powerful and allow the student to connect with the reading. Students may rely on their own expereinces, hypothesize, and justify a reasonable prediction. The second reading of the passage should be used to teach or refine other skills such as multiple meanings of words, text features, and suffixes. According to Stauffer to do making predictions and other skills in one reading will hinder comprehension. ( Stauffer R. 1969)

Prompts to Support Making Predictions

Does your prediction tell what will happen next?

What information from the book did you use to predict?

Can you make your prediction more specific to the story?



This activity can be used to make predictions about a story using narrative elements; to introduce vocabulary.   (Narrative text is suitable for this activity). First, select vocabulary to stimulate predictions. The vocabulary should represent the story elements: characters, setting, problem, action, and solution. Then, have students decide which story element the word tells about and write each word on the Predict-O-Gram graphic organizer. Next, have the students read the story. Make sure you revisit the original predictions and make changes as necessary. Use the resulting information to summarize or retell the story. ( Blachowicz C. L.1986)

Probable Passages

Probable passages are used to make predictions using story elements; to introduce vocabulary to make connections with story structure.

First, introduce key vocabulary from the story to the students. Have students use the key vocabulary to create probable sentences to predict each element in the story. (Use a story frame to map the process.) Allow the students to share their predictions with the class. Read the story to confirm or modify original predictions. (Wood K. 1984)


Key Vocabulary ~ Chrysanthemum, dreadful, school, perfect, Victoria, wilted, bloomed, Mrs. Twinkle, name

Setting I think the story takes place in school.
Characters The charecaters' names are Chrysanthemum, Victoria, and Mrs. Twinkle.
Problem The flowers were perfect when they blooomed, but then they wilted and looked dreadful.
Solution The students decided to buy new flowers for their school.