Are you a slow reader? Do you find it difficult to read fast and comprehend what you read at the same time? If yes, then you are not alone. Many of us feel the same way when it comes to reading.
But the good news is, that there are ways to improve your reading speed and comprehension. There are many people who believe that being a fast reader is in their genes.
While this may be partly true, it doesn’t mean that you cannot improve your reading speed and expand your vocabulary.
In fact, researchers have found that practice is the best way to improve your reading speed and comprehension.
There are many activities that can help you improve your reading speed by conditioning your brain for this type of activity. This article will explore Is Speed Reading A Myth and some techniques so that you can become a faster reader in no time.
What is reading speed?
Reading speed is the speed at which you read a text. It also refers to the average number of words per minute (WPM) that a person can process when reading printed text.
Reading speed differs according to the individual, their age, and the language that is being read.
The average reading speed for an American is about 200-250 words per minute, which is about 12,000 words per hour.
Reading speed is different from reading rate, which refers to how much time you spend on each word. There are two important aspects of reading speed: fluency and comprehension.
Fluency is how quickly you can read the text without stumbling on words. Comprehension is your ability to understand what you read.
What is the average reading speed?
The average reading speed is 250 words per minute. However, this number can vary depending on a person’s reading habits and the type of text they are reading.
Reading speed is a skill that can be learned by anyone. It is important to note that while you can increase your reading speed, you can’t sacrifice comprehension for speed.
So if you’re trying to increase your reading speed, make sure that you’re not skipping words as you read.
How fast do you need to read?
If you want to improve your reading speed, you’re not looking to do 1000 WPM. This is because you’re not reading for speed, but for comprehension.
So, you want to find a balance between speed and accuracy. If you’re reading for pleasure, you don’t want to stress out about reading too quickly.
If you’re reading for a test, you don’t want to spend too much time either. If you want to improve your reading speed, you want to focus on increasing your word-per-minute (WPM) rate.
You can do this by using a few simple techniques like reading in a more conducive environment and making some adjustments to your reading habits.
Add more light to your environment
A major part of improving reading speed is the environment in which you read. This can be anything from the type of text you’re reading to the lighting in your room.
Try reading different types of text in different lighting conditions. You could also try reading with a pen light. This will help you concentrate on the text and will make it easier to read faster.
Most of us read in a dimly lit room or in complete darkness. Even though we might feel comfortable in these conditions, they can hinder our reading speed.
For example, reading in low light can cause eye strain, which can slow you down on the way to finishing your reading assignment. Therefore, try reading in a well-lit room; preferably with natural sunlight.
Practice reading aloud
Reading is one of the best ways to improve your reading speed, vocabulary, and fluency. But, many of us find it difficult to read for long periods of time.
This could be due to stress, anxiety, or overthinking what you’re reading. If you find that reading is a stressful activity, then you could try reading aloud.
Reading aloud is a great way to break the tension and take off some of the pressure. It can also help you to go through the reading process more quickly because you don’t have to look at the page as often.
This process is called subvocalization, which is when you’re reading the text in your head. Subvocalization slows you down because you have to focus on each word as you’re reading it.
However, when you’re reading aloud, you’re not subvocalizing as much because you’re also saying the words out loud.
If you find that you’re still subvocalizing, then you can try saying each word out loud three times. This will help you to move along at a quicker pace.
Shadowing is a technique that can be used in tandem with reading aloud. It involves reading a text out loud and then repeating it in your head.
This is a great way to build fluency and increase your reading speed, especially when reading factual texts.
This is excellent for when you’re studying for a test because you don’t have to read all the unnecessary words when you’re reading a textbook. It can also be used when reading articles online.
When shadowing, you can either record yourself reading the text or you could have someone else read it out loud for you.
Once you’ve finished reading the text, play the recording again and try to repeat it word for word. Shadowing is an excellent tool for improving your reading speed.
It can help you to break your text down into smaller sections, which can make it easier to read and remember.
Develop Your Eye Movement Skills
For many of us, reading is an activity that we’ve done since we were young.
We’ve developed our own habits and techniques over the years, and they’ve worked for us. However, when you’re trying to improve your reading speed and expand your vocabulary, you need to look at things differently.
To improve your eye movement skills, it is important to break the text into smaller sections. These sections can be anywhere from 3-5 words long.
Start by finding the first section of a paragraph and reading it until you come across the first comma. Then, move your eyes to the right and read the first few words in the next section.
When you come across another comma, move your eyes to the right again and read the first couple of words in the new section. Keep on doing this until you’ve reached the end of the paragraph.
Sentence comprehension exercises
Slow reading requires you to analyze each word in a sentence. While this is a great technique for expanding your vocabulary, it can slow down your reading speed.
If you’re trying to improve your reading speed, then this is not the way to go. So, what you want to do is similar to skimming the text for more information.
Instead of reading each word, skim over the words and look for key phrases or keywords. When skimming, you can skim for first- or second-level headings, bold words, numbers, or italicized words.
You can also skim for transitions such as “however” or “on the other hand” or “therefore”. These are great ways to understand the article you’re reading and to get through it faster.
You can also use highlighters when you’re skimming a text. Highlighting keywords can help you to remember what you’ve read and can also help you to improve your reading speed.
Speed reading apps
Speed reading apps are a great way to improve your reading speed, comprehension, and vocabulary. They are designed with all three objectives in mind.
Another great way to improve your reading speed is by using a reading timer.
Reading for a set amount of time, such as 15 minutes, can help you to concentrate on the task at hand and can make you more productive.
Reading is an art that involves different aspects of your brain.
If you want to improve your reading speed, you need to condition your brain to read quickly and accurately.
Reading in a more conducive environment can help with this.
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