9 Great Ways of Using Post-It Notes for Reading Comprehension

There’s something about writing down information that helps it stick to our brains.

Using post-it notes for reading comprehension is a form of note-taking that helps readers retain more information. It involves using post-its or sticky notes to mark specific points of strategy or interest while reading.

So many people struggle with reading comprehension.

It’s frustrating to read a book and then not be able to accurately remember or understand on a deeper level what you just read.

That’s why it’s important to equip oneself with strategies and skills that will aid in understanding a book better. 

Reading for comprehension does not need to be a complicated thing. 

If you have a stack of sticky notes close by, grab them, and begin using them to facilitate reading comprehension.

They can serve as helpful tools if used strategically. This article shows you exactly how to do that.

Using Post-It Notes for Reading Comprehension

1. Make Predictions.

The first way to use post-it notes for reading comprehension is to write down your predictions.

Before, during, and after reading a book, make predictions about what you think is going to happen next.

Doing so throughout the reading keeps your mind actively engaged. You’ll be monitoring your understanding to determine whether or not your predictions were correct. 

2. Write Questions.

As you read, you will probably have some questions. 

  • What did the author mean when he said this? 
  • What does this word mean? 
  • Why did the character do that?
  • When does the story take place? 
  • Why did the author write this? 

As we read, our minds constantly ask clarifying questions as we learn new information. 

Jotting down these questions reminds us to review them after reading and to explore answers to those questions not addressed.

3. Think About Connections.

One of the best ways of using post-it notes for reading comprehension is by recording connections – text-to-self, text-to-text, and text-to-world.

Text-to-self are connections that readers make to their own personal lives, text-to-self are connections readers make to another book or story, and text-to-world are connections readers make that relate to the world around them. 

As you read, write on your sticky notes which type of connections you’re having.

Making connections strongly facilitates reading comprehension because when we connect with something, we tend to remember it better.

4. Note Interesting, Funny, or Surprising Parts.

Next, take note of any surprising, funny, or interesting parts that stand out for you. 

You’re more likely to remember sections that strike you in an entertaining way.

5. Infer Using Prior Knowledge.

Did you realize that your personal life experiences aid your understanding of a book? 

When we read, our prior knowledge helps us to make sense of what we’re reading. It enables us to make logical inferences.

Jot down any inferences you have while reading. 

  • What is the author not telling you directly that you understand anyway?
  • How do you know this?

6. Heart Your Favorite Parts.

What parts of the story are you enjoying most? Note the parts that touch your heart in some way. 

7. Record New Facts Learned.

As you read, record any interesting facts that stand out.

This could be facts about the subject matter, the author’s style, revelations about recurring themes, similarities between books in a series, observations about elements of a reading genre, etc.

8. Jot Down Confusing Parts or Words.

One of the best strategies for using post-it notes for reading comprehension is to jot down confusing parts. 

When our comprehension breaks down, it can be very frustrating. 

Recording confusing parts helps us to remember what clarifying questions to ask and what explanations to seek after reading. 

9. Discuss.

After reading a text, review your post-it notes. 

  • Were your predictions correct? 
  • Have all of your questions been answered?
  • Were your inferences accurate?

Once you’ve done this, think about the parts that are still confusing for you. Seek clarity by discussing this information with someone.  

Discussing a book helps the reading material “stick” to our brains because we gain understanding through talk.

So seek guidance by asking questions, and mentally take note of how the other person interacts with the text.

Final Thoughts: Using Post-It Notes for Reading Comprehension

This post outlined ways of strategically using post-it notes for reading comprehension to maximize understanding of a book. 

Using these valuable tips, you’ll be well equipped to understand more deeply a book or any type of reading selection. 

It may take time to get accustomed to all of these strategies, but with time, your reading comprehension will improve and you will become a much more confident reader. 

Related: Boost reading comprehension using the 7 Reading is Thinking strategies.