A contextual clue helps a reader guess meanings of particular words or phrases which may otherwise impair his / her understanding of important information. Applying contextual clues when reading is an important skill. The following are types of contextual clues: • Definitions: the meanings of words are given in the sentences themselves • Synonyms and Antonyms: words with the similar and opposite meanings respectively, are used in the same sentence / paragraph – these are compared • Comparisons and Contrasts: comparisons show similarities, whereas contrasts show differences – the meanings of words are deduced through analyzing these Descriptions: the meanings of words are described in the sentence / paragraph • Homographs: words that have the same spelling but differ in meanings or pronunciation are used in the reading text – these are compared • Word Classes (Parts of Speech): meanings of words are derived from recognizing the word classes (i. e. nouns, pronouns, verbs, adverbs, adjective, preposition, etc. ) Please peruse Unit 1 of the textbook for further reference and exercises. 3. Distinguishing Main Ideas from Supporting Details A main idea or controlling idea is the key point or most important point a writer is making is his / her paragraph or essay.
It is normally stated in the topic sentence. Supporting details are more specific information used to explain the main idea of a paragraph. Please peruse Unit 2 of the textbook for further reference and exercises. 4. Distinguishing Relevant Details from Irrelevant Details A paragraph discusses only one main idea or controlling idea. In order for a paragraph to be logical and coherent, all its supporting details must support or explain this idea. If they do not, they are considered irrelevant and vice versa. Please peruse Unit 2 of the textbook for further reference and exercises. 5.
Skimming and Scanning Skimming and scanning are important reading skills. They help the reader get a broad overview of the content of a particular reading text. The reader selects and reads only parts of the text that contain the most important ideas, and merely glimpses through the rest of it. Specifically, skimming helps the reader to identify the central idea of a particular reading text, whereas scanning aids in the identification of specific details. Please peruse Unit 1 of the textbook for further reference and exercises. 6. Synonym, Antonym and Homonym • Synonyms are words with the same meaning.
Examples:dependable= reliable cheap = inexpensive • Antonyms are words with the opposite meaning. Examples:attractive = dull joyous =sad • Homonyms are words that are spelt and pronounced similarly, but have different meanings. Examples:ape (noun) – an animal ape (verb) -to copy / mimic boil (verb) – to bring to boiling point boil (noun) – a painful sore Please peruse Unit 1 of the textbook for further reference and exercises. ———————– Institute of International Languages Multimedia University (ILMU) Centre for Foundation Studies and Extension Education (FOSEE) ———————– [pic]