Answer/Quote: “In sum, although we, as researchers, have acknowledged the importance of prior knowledge, we, as teachers, have yet to place the acquisition of new knowledge and the integration of prior knowledge firmly at the core of content area reading instruction.” P. 61.
Comment: One way to begin assessing prior knowledge is to ask students what they already know about the topic to be read. When I did that in a science class dealing with the circulatory system, the teacher for whom I was demonstrating a lesson, discovered that almost everything in the assigned chapter was already known by the students from previous grades. She and I were both surprised. In the end, the students needed to answer only four questions from the chapter. Combining the old and new knowledge should be a priority. RayS.
Title: Learning from Exposition: Extending Prose Comprehension through Knowledge Modeling.” PB Mosenthal and IS Kirsch. Journal of Reading (September 1991), 58-61.