Experts agree that reading for children is one of the best things parents and teachers can do to promote learning, especially when dealing with the story.
However, researchers have found that many trainers do not ask enough questions – and those who do them underestimate the intelligence of the children.
The study, published in the journal Early Childhood Research Quarterly, shows that children who read preschool teachers were only asked by 24% of the comments to talk about the story and the questions they asked if it was too easy be.
"We do not want to ask all the tough questions," says study author Laura Justice, a professor of educational psychology at Ohio State University. "But we should cognitively and linguistically teach children to ask challenging questions from time to time."
Although the study was only concerned with the behavior of teachers, parents should also be aware of this, says Justice, as earlier research has shown that most did not manage to question children at all when reading.
Researchers observed 96 preschool and kindergarten teachers and their students from schools in the Midwest and South US. The teachers were registered for a class of students reading the 25-page children's book "Kingdom of Friends".
In total, researchers have logged 5,207 questions from teachers and 3,469 responses from children.
About 52% of the questions were dumb-down questions like "Does he look happy?" ̵
"When teachers asked these more complex procedural questions, the children gave more detailed and complex answers," says Justice. "These are the questions we need more from."
This will often lead to wrong answers, but that, according to Justice, is an important part of learning.
"There should be teachable moments where teachers can help their students learn something new," she says. "They have a conversation that is conceptually challenging for the child because it will drive its development."
The results of the study show that children answered the questions of their teachers in 85% of the cases – and that's too good ,
"If children get 85 percent of the questions right, it means the questions the teacher asks are too simple," says Justice.
Some experts suggest that between 60 and 70% of the questions should be simple, but the remaining 30 to 40% should encourage children to think about higher concepts and to encourage them to increase their imagination.
According to Justice, an open question like "How will this book end?" Is a good example. 19659002] "You can see how such a question will evoke a complex answer," she says. "With some practice and consideration, we can change the way we talk to children while reading together and help them improve their language and reading skills."