comprehension TEKS talk image

Knowledge and Skills Statement

Comprehension skills: listening, speaking, reading, writing, and thinking using multiple texts. The student uses metacognitive skills to both develop and deepen comprehension of increasingly complex texts.

This can be assessed by using an observational checklist. This allows teachers to track student behaviors over time with multiple texts. The teacher can observe students during read-aloud, shared reading, or small-group reading instruction.

When observing student behaviors and recording responses on a checklist, a rubric that scores students' ability to generate questions makes tracking easier.

Sample rubric:

  1. The student is able to answer questions about a text, but he or she is unable to generate questions.
  2. The student is able to generate questions, but the questions are not always on topic.
  3. The student is able to generate simple questions that stay on topic.
  4. The student is able to generate questions that deepen understanding and stay on topic.


  • It is important to assess all three parts of the SE (before, during, and after) and it is important to assess students’ ability to generate questions not just answer them.
  • The difference between a 3 and a 4 is that a 3 would include asking questions that simply help the child better understand what is occurring in the story. A 4 would include asking questions that provoke deeper thinking about the text. See examples below:

Examples of a 3 (context: informational text about giraffes):

  • What do giraffes eat?
  • What is a baby giraffe called?
  • Why do giraffes need such long necks?
  • Are you saying that giraffes have long necks so they can get their food from the leaves on trees?

Examples of a 4:

  • Do you think giraffes get tired of eating leaves?
  • I wonder if giraffes like having such long necks?
  • Where can I see a giraffe in real life?
in reading, thinking of questions that require integration of new information


What Works Clearinghouse. (2010). Improving reading comprehension in kindergarten through 3rd grade: practice guide summary. Washington, DC: Institute of Education Science. Retrieved from

Summary: The goal of this practice guide is to offer educators specific evidence-based recommendations that address the challenge of teaching reading comprehension to students in kindergarten through 3rd grade. The guide provides practical, clear information on critical topics related to teaching reading comprehension and is based on the best available evidence as judged by the authors.