Graded readers are believed to be extremely useful for learners of English. Many research reports show that learners improve substantially if they read a lot of simplified books. In this post, I would like to share a Graded Reader Comic. It is a Sherlock Holmes story called The Final Curtain. The comic is just six pages long and is suitable for elementary and pre-intermediate learners of English.
Sherlock Holmes – The Final Curtain – Graded Reader
I found the following comic in Digital Comic Museum. All the comics published there are in public domain and anyone can download and use them.
I took the original comic, improved the quality of the pictures and simplified the dialogues. You can download and print the graded reader here:
If you prefer video, you can watch the video of the comic here. There is no sound but you can ask your students to read the bubbles aloud.
Graded Readers – research
There are many pieces of research that show that graded readers are very useful for learners of English. To be honest, my personal experience does not support these claims. Recently, I provided my 10-year-old students with two graded readers per week. It was a group of 18 students and it was voluntary to read the books. We went on like this for ten weeks and surprisingly half of the students read all the books provided.
At the end of the period, I gave the students the Level Vocabulary Test by Paul Nation and then my colleague gave the same test to another group of 10-year-olds who study the same textbook. My group knew 10% more words than the control group, but the other group scored better in a grammar test. So, I am not convinced that graded readers are the best thing. But as they do not harm my students, I will keep on using them.
If you are interested in more research on graded readers, you can find it here.