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The Scooby-Doo approach to close reading

By Ken Stoflet, Communications Specialist

Like many kids, I used to watch Scooby Doo, Where Are You! (Okay, I still do.) In each episode, Scooby-Doo, along with Shaggy, Fred, Velma, and Daphne, would solve clues to figure out mysteries that puzzled others in the town. Most of the time, they’d find out someone well-known was behind all of the ruckus. Elwood Crane?!

Like Scooby-Doo and the gang, students need to become close-reading detectives when they read. By gathering small details, investigating the text, decoding textual evidence, and providing an explanation of their reasoning, students develop the close-reading skills needed to be successful in today’s world.

The infographic below is a great tool to use in your classroom as a visual reminder of what effective close reading looks like. Check it out!

4 tips for teaching close reading

For more awesome reading materials, check out our reading resources page. But while you’re still here, don’t forget to subscribe to the Renaissance blog!

Ken Stoflet, Communications Specialist
Ken Stoflet, Communications Specialist
Ken Stoflet is the communications specialist at Renaissance. He has been with the company since 2015 and can be found crafting anything from a press release to a tweet. In his spare time, Ken enjoys spending time with his friends, lifting, and making trips to the Frozen Tundra to cheer on the Green Bay Packers.


  1. Micah Chatterton says:

    This is excellent. I plan to use these techniques (and maybe the Scooby Doo hook) as the basis for a bookmark I want to distribute to students with reading strategies on it.

  2. Chuck Baker says:

    This is getting printed for my wall!

  3. Fatima Peters says:

    Love this!! Definitely going to share with the teachers!

  4. Dawn says:

    I used something similar with Mickey Mouse as the detective. I like this one better and will definitely share with my teachers!

  5. Dvawn Maza says:

    I’m about to print this!!! I think my students will think that it is cool to act like a detective like Scooby Doo!

  6. Rita Platt says:

    Nice! Quick & easy infographic!

  7. Roxanne Provence says:

    I love this resource! It will be great to use with my students!

  8. Monica says:

    This is a helpful and Student friendly info graphic. I think my students will like and use it!

  9. David Keech says:

    I love this idea. We are implementing a ‘genius hour’ with our 7th grade math classes, and students will be researching projects to share. This is a great tip we will share with our team of teachers and students. Thanks!

    • Ken Stoflet, Communications Specialist Ken Stoflet says:

      You’re welcome, David! I’m glad you find it useful. ‘Genius Hour’ sounds like a great way to get students excited about learning!

  10. P R says:

    This is such a kid friendly way to get students engaged in the process of analytical reading.

  11. Christina ostrander says:

    This is a great tool!! Last year I made magnifing glasses on the ends of pencils for when we did close reading!

  12. Redeana says:

    Love the infographic!

  13. Renee Graham says:

    The Scooby Doo connection is just awesome!

  14. Lauren Temm says:

    Great article. Would love a poster like that in student friendly language (upper elementary).

  15. Narda Lugo says:

    I love the closed reading infographic.

  16. Chimere McRae says:

    I honestly haven’t focused much on close reading, but after reading this approach, I plan to try. Using Scooby Doo was a great way for students to connect with the approach!

  17. Sarah Swanzy says:

    This is a great reference page for close reading!

  18. Francine Canarios says:

    I love the Scooby Doo connection. I regularly use the attention grab “Scooby Doo.” My kids respond with, “Where are you?” So this will be a good addition to my classroom.
    Anytime we read a passage with questions I have my students highlight the reasons for the answers they choose. I think this helps them interact more closely with the text.

    • Ken Stoflet, Communications Specialist Ken Stoflet says:

      Indeed it does, Francine! Having your students highlight and explain their answers using the text is a great idea.

  19. Belinda says:

    We just started to implement close reading and this is very helpful….

  20. Denisse Ochoa says:

    Love the idea of thinking like detectives!

  21. Kelsie says:

    This is great! Can’t wait to try these strategies out!

  22. JoAnn Mayfield says:

    I love the connection between Scooby and close reading. Students and teachers can understand the connection of how Scooby and his friend have to dig deep to solve the mystery. When we are close reading, we need to dig deep for information. Great idea!

  23. Meredith Sanders says:

    Love this idea. I will share with my reading teachers!

  24. Beth Weeks says:

    Great idea! I love using the Scooby-Doo link! I have done similar things with C.S.I. skills!! Great info graphic for everyone’s wall!

  25. Timothy says:

    Love this. What a great poster.

  26. MLuders says:

    Scooby Doo…where are you? Where is the evidence? I like the hook.