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The K-W-L-H teaching technique is a good method to help students draw on prior knowledge and add it to that understanding as they read and reflect.

The K-W-L-H stands for:

  • K: What students KNOW about the subject.
  • W: What they WANT to learn.
  • L: What they LEARN as they read.
  • HHOW they can learn more (further sources where additional information can be found).

Sample K-W-L-H: The Life of Dinosaurs

What We Know What We Want to Find Out What We Learned How Can We Learn More
Dinosaurs are large. How long ago did they live? An archeologist has an exciting life. Museums
Dinosaurs are dead. Why did they die? Dinosaurs eat plants and some eat meat. Field trips
They lived a long time ago. How do we know what they looked like? Some dinosaurs were gigantic but had small brains. Archaeological digs
There is a movie about dinosaurs. Who are the people who study dinosaurs? Fossils uncover dinosaur traits. Videos
Categories of information we expect to use
  • Size
  • Career
  • Eating Habits

Adapted from “Strategic Teaching and Reading Project Guidebook” (NCREL, 1995, rev. ed.).

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