Scaffolding Children’s Narrative Comprehension Skills in Early Education and Home Settings

  • Anu KajamiesEmail author
  • Janne Lepola
  • Aino Mattinen
Part of the Educating the Young Child book series (EDYC, volume 16)


Before children learn to read, they develop their skills to construct a coherent representation of a story. However, many preschool-age children have difficulties related to early story comprehension that put them at risk for later motivational and reading comprehension challenges. Optimal scaffolding of story comprehension targets specific skills and combines cognitive, metacognitive, and motivational support. In this chapter, we first describe research on the development and scaffolding of children’s story comprehension. Second, we explore Bunny Stories and 7-Minutes-to-Stories as examples of dialogic reading interventions to support young children’s story comprehension in early education and home settings. Principles and practices of these interventions are provided to be applied while early educators or parents read any children’s book to support story comprehension. The focus is on adults’ sensitivity, flexibility, and responsibility, as well as children’s active participation in grasping the meaning of a story. Successes and challenges are described highlighting the importance of high-quality adult–child interactions in the development of children’s early skills and attitudes toward literacy.


Scaffolding Story comprehension Dialogic reading Early education 



We warmly thank the participating early educators, parents and children. The study was supported by the Grants 26080363 and 26080539 from the Academy of Finland to PI Minna Hannula-Sormunen, Center for Research on Learning and Instruction, Department of Teacher Education, and Turku Institute for Advanced Studies from University of Turku, and Niilo Mäki Institute from Jyväskylä, Finland.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of TurkuTurkuFinland

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