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ERIC Number: ED403541
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-Oct
Pages: 17
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Are the Teachers' Manuals in Basal Readers Helpful for Discussing Race in Multicultural Stories?
McDermott, Peter; And Others
A study examined the usefulness of the instructional recommendations in basal reader program teachers' manuals for discussing race in multicultural stories. Three recently published basal reader series widely used in the Capital District of New York State were used in this analysis: Harcourt Brace (1995), Houghton Mifflin (1993), and MacMillan (1993). The study focused on readers for grade levels 4-6 and, in each, identified stories depicting people of color and determined whether race or ethnicity was mentioned and used in the manuals' suggestions to teachers for classroom learning activities. Results indicated that the Harcourt Brace manuals contained 18 stories with people of color for grades 4-6, but MacMillan contained almost twice as many like stories at those grade levels and offered teaching ideas 66% of the time. Houghton Mifflin contained the fewest number of stories portraying racial diversity (11) and only 18% of those lessons contained teaching ideas for discussing race or culture with children. A total of 64 stories were identified, but only 34 of the manuals' directed reading plans contained ideas for discussing race or culture. Findings reveal wide variability in the treatment of color and culture among the basal reading series, and text genre influenced the likelihood that a manual would offer teaching ideas for racial diversity. There was a marked tendency in all three basal programs to present the world in a more harmonious way than it actually is. (Contains 18 references.) (CR)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York