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Reading Detective® Beginning

Using Higher-Order Thinking to Improve Reading Comprehension

Grades: 3-4

Language Arts

Grades: 3-4

Language Arts

  •  Multiple Award Winner

Reading Detective® Beginning

Reading Detective® Beginning 19 5 5 1

Description and Features


Description and Features

Teaches a depth of analysis that guarantees superior reading comprehension, top grades, and higher test scores!

Description and Features

These highly-effective, literature-based critical thinking activities develop the analysis, synthesis, and vocabulary skills students in Grades 3-4 need for exceptional reading comprehension. This 192-page activity book is especially effective at helping students understand challenging critical reading concepts such as making inferences, drawing conclusions, determining cause and effect, using context clues to define vocabulary, and making predictions and generalizations. 

Students read and analyze short literature passages and stories that include fiction and nonfiction genres. Then they answer multiple-choice and short-response questions, citing sentence evidence to support their answers. Concepts and skills covered include:

Literary Analysis Skills
     •  Define vocabulary using context clues
     •  Recognize figurative language
     •  Identify main idea, supporting details, and theme
     •  Recognize literary devices
     •  Identify story elements: theme, plot, setting, and characters

Reading Detective® Beginning includes the following genres:

Award-Winning Literature Excerpts
     •  The Barn
     •  Sable
     •  Dexter
     •  The Cricket in Times Square
     •  The Stories Huey Tells
     •  Sideways Stories from Wayside School
     •  Chocolate Fever

Stories and Articles
     •  Mystery
     •  Humor
     •  History
     •  Adventure

Nonfiction Topics
     •  Science
     •  Math
     •  Geography
     •  History
     •  Biography
     •  Inventions
     •  Sports

The Grades 3–4 (Beginning) level is organized into single-skills units with a concluding mixed-skills unit.

Teaching Support
Includes pretests, post-tests, lesson guidelines, and answers with detailed evidence. Reading and literary analysis skills are based on grade-level standards.

Product Details

Item#: 01506BBP
Author(s): Cheryl Block, Carrie Beckwith, Margaret Hockett, and David White
TOC: View Table of Contents
Subject: Language Arts
Type: Student Book with Answers
Media: Paperback Book
License: Reproducible
ISBN–10: 0-89455-769-6
ISBN–13: 978-0-89455-769-9
Pages: 192, perforated


Cathy Duffy's 101 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum Award

Test preparation available for the following:

Reading Detective® guarantees top performance on assessment tests, including:

Stanford Achievement Test™ (SAT/10)
California Achievement Tests (CAT/6)
Florida State Assessment (FSA)
Iowa Tests of Basic Skills® (ITBS®)
Secondary School Admissions Test (SSAT)
Michigan Educational Assessment Program (MEAP)
Palmetto Assessment Challenge Test (PACT)
New York State English Language Arts (ELA) Test
Louisiana Educational Assessment Program (LEAP)
Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS)
Ohio Proficiency Test
Kansas State Assessments
North Carolina End of Grade Tests
North Carolina Competency Tests
Arizona Instrument to Measure Standards (AIMS)
Indiana Statewide Test for Educational Progress (ISTEP)
Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System (MCAS)
Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL)
Connecticut Mastery Test (CMT)
Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment (MCA)
California Standardized Testing and Reporting (STAR)
and many more!

Customer Reviews

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Apr 27, 2016
My children (ages 12 and 8) and I have gone through your first level of Reading Detective®, and it's the best reading comprehension teaching material I have found! Other "reading comprehension" materials TEST a student's reading comprehension, but don't teach the student HOW to comprehend, or how to look for the answers in the text. I love that your material does that. I love your evidence-seeking approach!
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Mar 31, 2015
I just want to take a moment to say 'thank you' for your fine, solid products. I had my (homeschooled) third grader recently complete last year's standardized math and reading tests from another state (released publicly online). I just wanted to see how she would perform. We have used your products as supplemental materials since pre-k, and my kids have loved them. I must say your Reading Detective® and Mathematical Reasoning™ get much credit for her passing scores, and particularly, her above-average score on Reading. Bravo, TCTC! We will continue to use your products through my kids' entire education, and are looking forward to trying some new, challenging products next school year!
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Apr 7, 2013
The Reading Detective helped my students understand the testing format as well as develop their critical thinking about written material.…Their reading levels were raised from a range of 1 month to 2 years 5 months overall.
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Apr 7, 2013
You've really done your homework on this product. The questions the students answer match the language and skills required in our state testing. The depth with which my students have to think is astronomical.
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Apr 7, 2013
I'm...conducting research at my elementary school on the impact of Reading Detective on the reading comprehension SFA scores of the school's English language learners...[E]very student made progress, and two of the students actually improved two full grade levels!
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Apr 7, 2013
My son is bright but reading comprehension was his lowest area, so I had him do Reading Detective. After three months his reading comprehension jumped about four grades. A few months later, he was asked to take the ACT EXPLORE test for grades 8/9 ability, and he passed it with a 96% overall score!
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Apr 7, 2013
I knew this series would be great. For teaching children the problem-solving and questioning skills that will help them on tests also in their daily lessons, your materials are tops.
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Apr 7, 2013
This is one excellent reading comprehension series. The students I work with anticipate and enjoy reading the selections. I highly recommend these books.
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Apr 7, 2013
I just found Reading Detective, and I'm telling my whole school about it. It's just perfect for preparing students for their end-of-grade tests. The questions require them to make inferences about what they read and locate evidence in the passages to support their conclusions.
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Apr 7, 2013
My students like the Reading Detective stories…When they're intrigued by a story, they're more attentive to what they read. They critically examine their answers and take ownership in defending them.
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