Talking about books: Looking at covers
Looking at a book cover to guess what the book is about.
Click on the picture above to hear literacy learners talk about looking at a book cover to guess what the book will be about.
[Speaking to her class] Before we start, does anyone want a coloured overlay?
My name's Kim Brown, and I work for Transport for London, teaching English for dyslexic staff. There's much more to literacy and reading than just reading itself.
[Speaking to her class] So what I thought we could do is just discuss the cover and decide what we think the book might be about.
I noticed that it looked plain on the cover of the book. It said "Men at Work" which didn’t explain much.
Any ideas about what this book's going to be about?
Two men in a pub.
Possibly. And on the front cover, what does it say there under the title?
On the final line of it, it says that it was "funny" and "a sweet comedy".
So that gives us some idea of what this is going to be about.
When people familiarise themselves with content and comprehension before they start, they will hopefully become more fluent readers, engage more significantly and meaningfully with the content.
We got all that understanding before even opening the book, what it was about, so that gave us some understanding of the vocabulary we may be reading in the book.
You're kind of set up to like, "Yeah, I wanna read this book."
Quick tips for tutors
- Short film about explicit comprehension.
- Literacy learners use explicit comprehension by looking at a book's cover to get an idea of what the book will be about.
- May be used to introduce the topic in class and stimulate discussion around the featured story.