Skills vs. Strategies

  • What came first...the chicken or the egg?

    I am no philospoher, so I cannot help you with the above question...but I may be able to shed some light on a similar question "which came first, reading SKILLS or reading STRATEGIES?" Let me begin by introducing the two.

    Reading (literacy) skills generally fall under five categories; phonics, phonemic awareness, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. And for all of those budding authors out there, I am going to include writing. Many times, when people learn these skills,they learn them in isolation, starting from the most basic phonics (sounds and letters together) and phonemic awareness (sounds only) to comprehension.

    Reading strategies can be described as any interactive process of getting meaning from connected text. Predicting, summarizing, and inference are a few examples of reading strategies.  These “tools” will help aid in achieving the SKILLS.

    At the high school level, the primary focus is on COMPREHENSION. But do not be fooled. All other categories are equally important. 

    I would have to argue that SKILLS arrived on the scene first. Then, STRATEGIES were created for people to practice and master the SKILLS. Regardless, one must possess ample SKILLS and be able to access multiple STRATEGIES in order to be successful with Literacy. Or is it the other way around??

    Below is a breakdown of SKILLS, STRATEGIES, and a link to read more. Thank you Reading Rockets