ERIC Number: ED392784
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Authentic Learning with At Risk Elementary School Children.
Sullivan, Emilie P.
Children who are "at risk" are differentiated by their difficulty meeting standards for school success. This paper describes a model for a field-based component of an elementary education children's literature course involving in-school tutoring of at risk children. The program provided preservice teachers the opportunity to: (1) develop strategies and expand concepts introduced in the children's literature course through authentic teaching situations; (2) learn the problems encountered by children from diverse backgrounds; and (3) reflect on and critique their instructional practices. The study included a total of 88 college students enrolled in 3 children's literature classes during the 1994-95 academic year. The students worked with 149 elementary school students who had been selected for the tutoring program for various reasons, including lack of progress in reading/communication skills, non-supportive home environments, lack of confidence or self-esteem, shyness, and being a non-native English speaker. The goals for the college students were to develop in the child a liking for reading and to enhance the child's self-esteem or self-concept and literacy skills. The teacher education students were overwhelmingly positive about their experience. They were able to establish rapport with children who were from culturally diverse groups; they learned to view children with problems as individuals rather than problems; they became familiar with how schools function and the classroom teacher's difficulty in juggling multiple schedules; they used problem solving skills in selecting materials and teaching strategies; and they developed confidence in their choice of teaching as a profession. Classroom teachers were very positive about the tutoring program and the college students' work, and they identified a number of positive behavior changes in the children. Findings support research on the relationship between self-esteem and learning, the importance of identification and modeling, and the need for authentic learning through school partnerships. (ND)
Descriptors: Childrens Literature, Classroom Techniques, Cooperating Teachers, Cross Age Teaching, Elementary Education, Elementary School Students, Field Experience Programs, High Risk Students, Higher Education, Literacy, Multicultural Education, Partnerships in Education, Preservice Teacher Education, Reading Skills, Remedial Instruction, Self Concept, Self Esteem, Special Needs Students, Teaching Models, Tutoring
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A