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ERIC Number: ED238646
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Jan
Pages: 133
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
The Sun is Shining in my Eyes: The Navajo Child Enters Kindergarten Expecting to Write and He Can.
Boloz, Sigmund A.; Jenness, Diana
The Ganado (Arizona) Primary School, located on the Navajo Reservation, instituted a successful English writing project for kindergarten children that illustrated that young children should be allowed and expected to develop as writers because they are capable of real writing. Teachers encouraged children to complete drawings and writings in journals, providing them with correct spellings initially but encouraging their own inventive spellings later. To supplement the journal project, teachers regularly read to the children; discussed the children's paintings, drawings, and clay sculptures; taught the children phonetics and some sight words; and developed stories cooperatively with the children. The quality of the writing that resulted varied from child to child. Taken as a whole, the work illustrated five developmental steps towards writing, as the children's writing moved from mimicry through shape and linearity to meaning, word inventories, and short expressions. The project showed that to promote language proficiency at the kindergarten level, teachers must believe that the child is capable of developing language, expect the child's participation, be prepared to risk, and constantly give children opportunities to test their developing theories of language. A collection of 73 of the children's pictures and writings with transcriptions to adult spellings is included. (SB)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Inventive Spelling; Journal Writing; Navajo (Nation); Navajo Reservation