ERIC Number: ED363868
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
"Maniac Magee" and "Ragtime Tumpie": Children Negotiating Self and World through Reading and Writing.
McGinley, William; Kamberelis, George
A study examined the effect of an alternative language arts program designed to encourage children to take up reading and writing in ways that they find personally, socially, and politically relevant. Throughout a school year, the development of the alternative language arts program in a third/fourth grade classroom in an urban school was documented. Extensive case studies were conducted on five children in the classroom. Data included: classroom observation; field notes; children's stories, poems, essays, and reading response journals; and in-depth conversational interviews that focused on the audiences and functions of the children's reading and writing. Results demonstrated the many different ways in which the children used reading and writing as vehicles for personal, social, and political exploration. Results also documented how particular children constructed their own unique repertoires of reading and writing functions--repertoires that reflected the interests, needs, and issues most central to their individual sensibilities and life histories. Findings suggest: (1) educators need to question viewing comprehension and production of the conceptual content of written texts as the primary functions of reading and writing; and (2) relocating classroom literacy activities within the concrete exigencies of children's lives seems to hold promise for the development of new and more productive forms of literacy pedagogy. (Five tables of data and two figures presenting student writing samples are included; 86 references, a taxonomy of personal, social, and political functions of reading and writing, and eight samples of student writing are attached.) (Author/RS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Council of Teachers of English, Urbana, IL.; Michigan Univ., Ann Arbor. Rackham Graduate School.
Authoring Institution: N/A