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Camp: College Prep Reading & Comprehension for Teens

Mike Hatcher
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I used to hate reading! These 4 Session Classes will cover the 4 Levels of Comprehension based on Mortimer Adler's book, How to Read a Book. I simplify this college-level text in simple steps and we practice it together.

Class experience

US Grade 6 - 9
4 lessons//1 Week
 Week 1
Lesson 1
College Prep Reading Method
• Simplified 4 Levels version of Adler – • Example: 4 Levels method and Harry Potter • Student Presentation Projects & Written Summaries – dates assigned to students. • Pick a book - summarize 4 Levels of steps with the book
Lesson 2
Adler 4 Level Method Review and Quiz
• Example: Lord of the Flies • “College Prep” Reading List and Plan • Presentation Review and Round 1 of Student Presentations • Quiz #1 based on session #1 lecture and discussion.
Lesson 3
Simple Lessons to More Complex Themes
• Example: William McCraven, Make Your Bed • Round 2 of Student Presentations & Written Summaries. • Quiz #2 based on session #2 lecture.
Lesson 4
Comparing More Complex Themes
• Critical comparison of Lord of the Flies to Harry Potter • Round 3 of Student Presentations. • Quiz #3 based on session #3 lecture and discussion.
This class is taught in English.
  • 1. Students will have both working knowledge and understanding of using the 4 Levels of Reading and comprehension. 2. Students will be able to recall 1-2 of the main points from the 3 texts used for demonstrations and taught in the class: Covey, Allen, and McRaven. 3. Experience of reading together would be inspiring to see the life benefit of reading and learning.
I have enjoyed teaching these material hundreds of times now in classroom and one-on-one settings. Learning to read well and quickly opens the path of learning.

For years I struggled as a student and didn't do well. My problem was that I was a slow reader. Not only was I a slow as a reader, but the real problem was also that my comprehension was terrible. I couldn't keep track of what I'd read and what it was all about. My problem was that I read linearly - one word at a time and didn't keep what I'd read in my head and carry it forward from page to page. It all just disappeared just like retaining the names of people after meeting them. Before long I would just fall asleep. When classes were class text-driven (a book), I was in trouble. When quizzes and exams were based on a text (book), I was also in trouble and all of this was clearly reflected in my grades.

In the late 90s, the book, How to Read a Book changed my reading crisis. The four levels of reading, how to read different types of literature, and critical thinking model regrouped my method of reading. More than just changing my reading, now reading a whole book and grasping its meaning with easy made learning fun rather than something painful. I started reading the Oprah list, business bestsellers, biographies, books that fed my soul, books that helped me grow emotionally and relationally. I started to average reading 2 books a week. There were books I finished while standing in a bookstore for 20 minutes using this method. My memory changed too along the way. I was able to recall content from many of these books. This affected more than my learning, teaching, mentoring, counseling, and business. It has been my delight to teach this method and help others to enjoy learning and the critical thinking model. The framework is also one that makes writing and speaking totally unique.
Homework Offered
• 3 Quizzes reviewing the main points of the previous class teaching topic and book review. • Class presentation and written summary following the framework assigned. • Class participation in discussions.
1 - 2 hours per week outside of class
Assessments Offered
• 3 quizzes (40%) • Participation in the class discussion (30%) • Student presentation and written summary (30%)
Grades Offered
 1 file available upon enrollment
I will review and summarize these books in class. It’s optional to read them. How to Read a Book, Adler Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life...and Maybe the World, William McRaven
Learners will not need to use any apps or websites beyond the standard Outschool tools.
All content is appropriate for students age 10-up.
We will discuss books such as Harry Potter, Lord of the Rings, Marvel, as well as current events (Covid19).
Joined April, 2020
Teacher expertise and credentials
Master's Degree
California Teaching Certificate
I've been teaching here on Outschool since May 2020. It has been my pleasure to teach more than 2200 students here this last year. I find that a dialog with parents is very helpful for encouraging success for students.

Truth, Beauty, and Goodness... 
Group Class


for 4 classes
4x per week, 1 week
45 min

Completed by 187 learners
Live video meetings
Ages: 11-16
3-12 learners per class

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