Think Aloud

Metacognitive Modeling

UDL 3.2 UDL 3.3

A think aloud is an interactive process in which the teacher shares her internal cognitive thinking process aloud as a way to support and scaffold various reading comprehension strategies such as summarizing, retelling, asking questions and making connections (e.g. text-to-self, text-to-text, text-to-world). As the teacher is reading a text aloud, she helps students by modeling and constructing the meaning of the story by verbalizing what she is thinking. With the think aloud, the teacher may focus on 1-2 reading comprehension strategies. The purpose of a think aloud is for students to learn how to monitor their comprehension and understanding of the story as they are actively engaged in the reading process.

Implementation Tips

Lesson Plans
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Graphic Organizers
Think alouds can be especially supportive for students with various learning needs as they provide scaffolding for metacognitive thinking skills. In addition, graphic organizers such as t-charts can be used during the think aloud process as well as when students are reading and practicing the comprehension strategies independently or with a group.
Implementation Strategies
For more information on how to incorporate think aloud comprehension strategies in your classroom, take a look at [[ | ]]


ELL - Making Connections – Text-to-Self – 2nd grade
While reading to the class, “Best Friends Together Again” by Aliki, the teacher models a think aloud of making connections (e.g. text-to-self) by saying “In the story, when Peter moved away it reminds me of a time when my best friend moved to another state. I remember getting postcards from my friend about his new state.” As students pair up and read the story together, the teacher encourages the students to pause while reading and make test-to-self connections.
History – Summarizing – T-Chart
While reading a historical text on Thomas Jefferson in class, the teacher uses a t-chart to summarize key details and facts of Thomas Jefferson's life. On the right side of the t-chart is the page number of the quote, fact or detail along with the written quote. On the left side of the t-chart the student writes general comments, questions or inferences that can be made based on the fact or detail. The teacher models a think aloud for how to use the t-chart in class as well as inferences, questions and further analysis of the text.
Social Narratives
When modeling & reading social scripts, the teacher models a think aloud to help students infer what the student may be thinking based on the behavior and social interaction of the characters in the story. This helps students with perspective-taking and can also be used when making inferences about character’s motivation in fictional stories.

Related Strategies