The orientation gives consideration to what needs to be put in place for children to access the text. This could be achieved through:
Activation of prior knowledge
Helping children make connections between their own experiences and a text is a useful way into a new book, particularly if the context is unfamiliar and the connections are not immediately apparent. This part of the process is important for teachers to gauge children’s prior knowledge. It is also an opportunity for children to share different cultural experiences and learn from each other.
Building background knowledge
In some instances, it is beneficial to develop background knowledge prior to reading. For instance, knowing something about the coal mining industry before reading Town is by the Sea, could enhance understanding and appreciation of the story. Consider the context, the children’s experiences and the assumptions about prior knowledge assumed by the text. It is advisable not to over explicate; we learn through reading as well as direct experience. A judgement hs to be made about what to teach in advance, and what is best left to emerge through the course of reading.
Take One Book uses a blended approach to vocabulary teaching which is woven into the teaching sequences.
Some key vocabulary may be pre-taught to help children access the text. However, judgements need to be made about what is essential. Too much pre-teaching of vocabulary can disrupt the child’s construction of the text schema. Generally, when readers encounter new words in texts, they can approximate an understanding from the context. This is usually sufficient for understanding the gist. Unless the vocabulary is likely to be a barrier to accessing the text, it may be preferable to leave the focus on word investigation and definition until after a first reading; more precise understandings can be clarified later.
Where pre-teaching is considered necessary, creative ways of introducing new vocabulary is built into the orientation stage. For instance, audio visual strategies are used for introducing words from a semantic field, which are essential to the visualisation of the text. Exploring high concept words prior to reading is used occasionally to develop an open-mindedness when approaching the text. Contextless teaching is avoided.