Strategic integration involves logical and intentional connections between skills and strategies within instruction. The intent is to link prerequisite skills to more complex applications with higher-order skills. For example, reading text requires use of a very complex combination of skills: recognizing and producing sounds, linking sounds to letter, rapidly linking this all to a whole page of words, all the while structuring what is read, asking questions about what is read, summarizing, and predicting what is coming next in order to ultimately comprehend what was read.
Reading instruction in the big ideas should not teach skills in isolation, but rather teach skills and then connect those skills across the big ideas to reach the ultimate goal of reading connected text for meaning. Reading instruction should deliberately and strategically integrate skills across the big ideas.