Fill in the Blank Stories
The Diary of a First Grade Teacher

Fill in the blank stories serve several purposes ... They can be used as reading activities in the classroom or as reading tests. Most importantly, they can help the teacher determine your child’s reading comprehension level.

Reading Comprehension Definition

College professors who teach future teachers say repeatedly, “Reading is not simply the calling out of words. Understanding what you have read is what reading comprehension is ... Reading IS comprehending.

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Three Reading Levels



There are three different types of reading levels … recreational level, frustration level, and instructional level.

Teachers may use several different evaluations to determine your child’s reading levels.

The instructional level is the highest level at which your child can read and understand. This is the place the teacher will use in the classroom to instruct your child, to teach him new skills and vocabulary.

The recreational reading level, also called the independent reading level, is the spot where your child can enjoy reading. Reading on his own, he can easily understand the story or the message.

The frustration level is the third type of reading level. And as suggested by its name, this is where the reading is just too difficult.

While all three levels of reading are important for the teacher to know, you – as the parent - want to know how this information can help you.

I'd say, simply avoid buying books that are too difficult for your child to read. When he's learning to read, you don't want him frustrated. You want him to enjoy reading!

Here’s a suggestion: Take your child to the public library or a bookstore, and go to the children’s section. Allow him to choose a book and read a page or two aloud.

He should be able to read the book he has chosen with 90% accuracy. That is, if he misses MORE THAN one word out of every ten, the book is too hard for him.

Teachers know what to do, but if you’re interested in seeing HOW they do it, here is ONE strategy they may use to determine the reading level of your child.

Cloze Exercises Can Be Used As
Reading Activities or Tests

Fill in the blank stories are examples of cloze exercises. Here, the child reads sentences with words missing. Then, he fills in the blank with the correct answer.

Here are some examples of fill in the blank stories:

  1. Dad and Bob play ball. Dad throws the ball. ___ tries to catch it.
  2. Mel has a little red hen. Every day the hen lays an egg for Mel to eat. The hen makes a funny noise to tell Mel to come and get the ___.
  3. A cat can climb a tree. A dog cannot. This is good for Pam's cat. When Joe's big dog comes over, the cat runs away. It climbs a ___.
  4. Nan wants to see a squirrel. One day she is playing under a tree. She hears a funny little noise. She looks up, and what do you think she sees? Up in the ___ is the thing she has always wanted to see, a ___.
  5. After Joe and Sam played all day, they were hungry. Joe went into the house and got something to ___. He came out again and gave a big apple to ___.
  6. One day Jane was cleaning. She found a dime. It was on the floor under the bed. Now, every time Jane ___, she looks under the bed for a ___.
  7. A blue bird sees a swan. The swan has white feathers. The blue bird wants white feathers like the swan. The blue bird sees the swan in the water. She thinks the water makes the swan's feathers white. The blue bird jumps in the ___. Does that make her feathers ___?
  8. Bill and Kate play in the deep snow. They pull the sled up to the top of the hill. Down, down they go. They do this over and over. It is fun. But it is hard work to pull the ___ to the top of the hill.
  9. Birds' eggs are not the same. The robin lays four or five blue eggs. The dove lays two white eggs. If you see a nest with four blue eggs in it, you may say that it is the nest of a ___. It is not the nest of a ___.

Please note that the fill in the blank stories above are for reading levels Grade One and Grade Two.

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