Self-monitoring is an important metacognitive tool for boosting reading comprehension by cultivating a reader's natural inner dialogue. Below is an example of of the kinds of self-questioning that must take place while reading. These question prompts emphasize the active role that students must assume in the comprehension process if self-monitoring procedures are to be effective.

Self-Questioning Procedure (Question Generation)

  Inner Dialogue (Question Answering)
1. Why am I reading this? [purpose] To learn about the Japanese culture.
2. What will I be learning? [Skim] The pictures show all different parts of the Japanese culture.
3. How is this organized? [Preview] Each letter of the alphabet tells me about Japan.
4. What do I already know about this? [Schemata] I saw "sushi" on restaurant menus.
5. Does this make sense as I read? Do I understand? [Active Reading] Yes. The pictures help me make a person-to-text connection.
6. Is there new information here? Should I slow down? Reread? [Metacognitive Strategy] Yes. The pronunciations in italics help me pronounce the words. Slow down. I should read this part again.
7. How am I doing? Am I learning as I read? [Metacognitive Monitoring] Yes. These words make sense because the picture images make Japan real. I'll add Japanese words to my thesaurus.
Source: Information from A to Zen by Ruth Wells; Illustrator, Yoshi. (1992). Saxonville, MA: Simon & Schuster.