Close Reading and Big Picture Reading Strategies – Literature

In this article, you will learn about the two different reading approaches in a work of literature: close reading and big picture reading strategies.

Have you remembered the show Sesame Street where Grover, a fuzzy blue character, demonstrates the difference between the concepts of near and far? Grover runs in front of the camera and shouts, ”Near!” and then he runs away from the camera screaming, “Far!”.

Close reading and big picture reading are two ways of reading a work of literature. The two approaches use a wide array of strategies to provide different kinds of information or details about a text.

What is close reading?

The close reading strategy signifies the single and particular. To simplify its meaning, it is looking at small details in the story, novel, or poem and how they are connected to the larger story. Close attention to word choice, character actions, and symbolic objects are some of the effective ways in which sentences unravel ideas, as well as formal structures.

Readers must become detectives. As a detective does, it investigates things like repeating sounds, word choices, and figurative language.

To make a better understanding of what close reading means, it is about taking note of small details and knotting them together to know what that literature is all about.

What is Big Picture reading?

Big picture reading focuses on larger themes or ideas. An example of its ideas is free will or fate. Big picture reading allows you to make generalizations, and see patterns and overarching themes. These three are used to describe literature as a whole. You need to take a wider perspective view of the work of literature.

Looking at the big picture and the smaller details in a work of literature do not change what the novel, play, or poem is all about. We just focus on different things due to our point of view.

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Leana Jan Candoleta

Leana was an administrative officer in a dialysis center. She has extensive experiences with all administrative tasks, including scheduling, information and billing. Having held positions in the medical and business field, leana is able to tailor her skills to meet the needs of various patients and clients. she has increased her efficiency in her skills and roles and became an effective employee in her company. As a senior Administrative Officer, she has helped the company earn millions when it comes to medical transactions. Leana graduated from West Visayas State University with a Bachelor of Science in Development Communication. After she graduated, she worked as an English Tutor in a Foreign School as her first job. She also served the community for a year and three months wherein she gained more experiences in her career record. She was also a holder of Civil Service License. During her college years, Leana was a member of Gawad Kalinga and Philippine League of Development Communication. After 5 years of working, she decided to shift to another career which is teaching. She took up the course Teacher Certificate Program in Phinma-University of Iloilo. She balanced work, school, social life and a mother. She did this to create a bigger future for herself and for her family. Leana is also a member of a non-government association in Iloilo City wherein her passions and hobbies can be shown off to other group members. Leana is a very passionate and goal-achiever person. She will do anything to be on top and be the best among the rest to reach for her better future. She is now waiting for the Licensure Examination for Teachers and hoping that she will pass it.