ERIC Number: ED227451
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Literacy Acquisition and Knowledge Control in the First Grade.
A study explored the relationship between social/cultural control and the way knowledge is structured and presented in schools. "Critical literacy" was defined as the perception of meaning within the total context of the relevant experiences of the reader. The "dilemmas of schooling" language developed by A. Berlak and H. Berlak was used to characterize the ways the teachers in the study linked thought to action. Subjects, 10 children in two first grade classes, were observed for 10 months; they and their mothers were also interviewed before and after the school year. Although both classroom environments were nearly identical, strong differences surfaced in the teachers' patterns of control. Their actions transmitted two distinct views of reading to their students, with one teacher encouraging a decoding view of reading while the other encouraged critical literacy. The teachers also projected different messages about the relation of public to private knowledge and the importance of conformity or challenge to the status quo. Assumptions embedded in the basal reading program also transmitted cultural values to the students. The combination of the teachers' patterns of resolution and the curriculum of the school tended to distance the students from personal involvement with public knowledge and to reinforce conformity and obedience, making it unlikely that children would be able to achieve critical literacy in this setting. (JL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Montreal, Quebec, Canada, April 11-15, 1983).