Comprehension Lessons

sample of Readtopia graphic novel covers

Readtopia Literature Comprehension Lessons at the Middle School / High School unit level are designed around the direct instruction framework AnchorReadApply.

ALL Literature Comprehension whole group lessons use the full Conventional 6 (Bodies that Work and States of Matter) or Conventional 7 anchor literature text. Read aloud to your students (or listen to the audio presentation) as they work together as a whole group (regardless of independent reading level).

Let’s take a look at the lesson plans in the unit Teacher Guides to see the flow of a comprehension lesson.

Bodies that Work literature comprehension lesson example
Literature Comprehension Lesson

Comprehension Strategy: Each lesson models and teaches a single comprehension strategy. Strategies are repeated across multiple units to provide ongoing distributed learning opportunities.

Lesson Objective: Clear objectives let you align lessons to your alternate state standards so you can easily write and track IEP goals.

Teacher Preparation: Actions and materials required to implement each lesson are clearly described so that you can prepare in advance to deliver a successful learning experience to your students.


You can use the Readtopia Print Center to pre-print lesson materials at the beginning of every unit to streamline the process!

Bodies that Work literature comprehension lesson example
Literature Comprehension Lesson

Anchor: A whole group activity guides students to activate world knowledge, make personal connections to a key concept, and prepare to purposefully engage with the story text.

Bodies that Work literature comprehension lesson example
Literature Comprehension Lesson

Purpose for Reading: Sets a Purpose for Reading by stating the lesson objective in student language related directly to chapter content.

Read: Students listen as a whole group while the Conventional Level 6 (Jane Goodall or Call of the Wild) or Level 7 book chapter is read aloud to them using the Audio Book Presentation (or read by teacher). Read completely through the chapter without stopping to ask questions. (You can remind students of the Purpose for Reading one time during the chapter.)

Motivate and Engage with Audio Book Presentations

Students LOVE to listen to the story read aloud by professional narrators who model fluent reading with engaging expression, amusing accents that match the setting and/or culture of the story, and different “voices” for each character that make readers feel like they are part of the story!

Bodies that Work literature comprehension lesson example
Literature Comprehension Lesson

Apply: Students work as a whole group to respond to the Purpose for Reading.  Then they are guided to go back to the text to check their answers. (The teacher asks questions like “What makes you say that?” and “How do you know that?”). The goal is for students to listen to remember and think about the text in order to achieve a variety of clearly stated purposes... then return to the text to check responses rather than locate answers while reading or listening.

Successful strategies to support students using augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) tip sheet
Successful Strategies: Support Students Using AAC

  Research Says ...

“The first step in helping a child with ID or DD to become literate is to presume competence (Biklen & Burke, 2006) in his or her abilities to gain such knowledge and skills. This means to put aside doubts and preconceived notions about what a student may be able to accomplish based on a student’s label of disability, estimates of IQ, or assumed limitations and instead, teach as if the child will learn.”
Michelle Duffy in Steps to Success: Literacy instruction for Students with Disabilities


Continually Responding to YOUR Teaching Needs

Readtopia developers are constantly working to improve the learning experience for both teachers and students. As a result, you may find additional support provided in lessons in new units as we make them available. Click here for examples of supports that have been added since the release of early Readtopia units.

Thematic Units