ERIC Number: ED272847
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Basal Reading Readiness Programs: What Are They Really Teaching?
Weiss, Maria J.
Six eclectic basal readers were evaluated to determine what basal readiness programs are teaching kindergarten and early first grade children. Each lesson was analyzed to discover the main purpose of instruction as stated in an objective or skill and the actual requirements placed upon the child during instruction. Using the recommendations from "Becoming a Nation of Readers" (Anderson, 1984), lessons and objectives were categorized as either positive program aspects--oral language and listening, letter recognition, sound/symbol association and sight vocabulary, and writing experiences--or negative aspects--fine motor skills; colors, shapes, and numbers; excessive handwriting; and perceptual training. Analysis revealed that while some series included only a few or no negative program aspects, they had overemphasized one aspect, especially letter recognition and sound/symbol associations. All programs lacked a balance among positive aspects. The following recommendations are based on this analysis: (1) basal reading readiness programs should include writing experiences, (2) oral language activities should be used to a larger degree, (3) listening comprehension development should be a major part of reading readiness programs, and (4) metalanguage should be taught through such informal methods as labeling objects in the classroom and continually exposing children to print. (HOD)
Descriptors: Basal Reading, Beginning Reading, Content Analysis, Educational Objectives, Evaluation Criteria, Listening Comprehension, Oral Language, Primary Education, Program Evaluation, Reading Readiness, Reading Research, Reading Skills, Textbook Evaluation, Vocabulary Development, Writing Exercises
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Far West Regional Conference of the International Reading Association (12th, Reno, NV, March 13-15, 1986).