Matching Items (4)

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FIGURATIVE LANGUAGE: ITS PRESENCE IN CHILDREN'S LITERATURE AND IMPORTANCE FOR YOUNG READERS

Description

This study explores the presence of figurative language in reputable children's literature and the importance of figurative language instruction in the elementary classroom. It seeks to answer three basic questions

This study explores the presence of figurative language in reputable children's literature and the importance of figurative language instruction in the elementary classroom. It seeks to answer three basic questions for the teaching community. First, how prevalently does figurative language appear in prominent books written at reading levels for the elementary grades? Next, how essential is students' understanding of this figurative language to their overall comprehension of a story? Finally, how do the recently implemented Common Core Standards consider the presence of figurative language in children's literature across elementary grade levels? In order to investigate these questions, the researcher analyzed 39 books that received the Caldecott Medal or Honor distinction in 2003-2012 and recorded the presence of figurative language in the text. Results were analyzed using descriptive statistics. The researcher found patterns among the types of figurative language used and the target age groups of the books. She also found that the use of figurative language in the text was generally stylistic by the authors and not necessarily essential for students to fully comprehend the stories. The researcher then made connections to the Common Core Standards across elementary grade levels. She found that there were several Common Core Standards concerning figurative language in the Reading and Language categories. The researcher concluded that figurative language should complement the curriculum across all elementary grades, including grades below third. This conclusion has implications for the entire elementary teaching community.

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Date Created
  • 2013-05

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Building literacy strategies in a freshman English classroom

Description

An unrelenting need exists to improve literacy instruction in secondary schools in the United States. Reading scores, especially among minority and language minority students, as well as the economically disadvantaged,

An unrelenting need exists to improve literacy instruction in secondary schools in the United States. Reading scores, especially among minority and language minority students, as well as the economically disadvantaged, have not produced significant gains in recent years. The problem of low level reading skills in secondary grades is complicated to address, however, as many secondary teachers find themselves ill-equipped to deal with the challenges they face. Improving student achievement by integrating reading comprehension strategies into the freshman English curriculum was the ultimate goal of this innovation. A total of 15 freshman English language arts teachers and 30 freshman students participated in this 14 week action research study, which involved teaching explicit pre-, during-, and post-reading strategies during daily lessons at a large, urban high school in the Southwestern United States. Data were collected using a reading diagnostic test, focus group interviews with teachers, individual interviews with teachers and students, and teacher observations. Findings from the data suggest that professional development designed to infuse comprehension strategies through collaborative inquiry among English language arts teachers contributed to assisting students to perform better on reading diagnostic measures. Furthermore, the findings suggest that this method of professional development served to raise teachers' self-efficacy regarding literacy instruction, which, in turn, improved students' efficacy and performance as readers.

Contributors

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Date Created
  • 2013

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Professional development plus: rethinking professional learning

Description

The purpose of professional development is to enhance educator practices so that students may achieve at high levels. Too often, professional development tends to be too broad, general, or unrelated

The purpose of professional development is to enhance educator practices so that students may achieve at high levels. Too often, professional development tends to be too broad, general, or unrelated to problems of practice that teachers face in their own classrooms. This action research project builds upon the scholarly research that recognizes the need for professional development to be sustained, connected to teachers' own contexts, focused on specific subject matter, collaborative, and reflective. The goal of this action research study was to facilitate a culture of continuous improvement in teaching and learning by utilizing a model of professional development that challenges teachers to question their practices, utilize research to support their instruction, design an inquiry project that supports a change in practice, and examine changes in student growth. Results suggest that although teachers recognize the complexities that surround professional development, they found that this professional development model focused on their needs as professionals, was sustained over time, and was supported by a variety of professional influences. As a result of the model implemented, teachers reported shifts in their instructional practices and student growth related to personal inquiry projects.

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Date Created
  • 2013

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Employing National Board Certification practices with all teachers: the potential of cognitive coaching and mentoring

Description

National Board Certification is an esteemed certification and professional learning and reflective opportunity for teachers. Cognitive coaching is also a method of support many teachers receive over the course of

National Board Certification is an esteemed certification and professional learning and reflective opportunity for teachers. Cognitive coaching is also a method of support many teachers receive over the course of their National Board Certification journey. The certification process involves reflective practices and opportunities for teachers to think differently about their instructional decisions and overall teaching practice. This project involves teachers who are not affiliated with the National Board Certification process. The researcher provides them with reflective opportunities and components from the certification process. An analysis of qualitative and quantitative data unveil the following results. First, coaching and practices associated with the National Board Certification process benefit all teachers. In addition, qualitative data from the findings reveal that frequent and consistent reflective opportunities provided to teachers impact their awareness of content knowledge and their students' needs. The findings from this study also suggest that when teachers are given reflective opportunities, time to collaborate with others, and consistent and frequent time to work with a coach, then student achievement is positively affected.

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Date Created
  • 2013