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ERIC Number: ED541338
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013-May
Pages: 112
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 35
Improving Elementary Students' Engagement during Independent Reading through Teacher Conferencing, Teacher Modeling, and Student Choice
Carey, Jenna L.; Howard, Cameron C.; Leftwich, Rebecca J.
Online Submission, Master of Arts Action Research Project, Saint Xavier University
The purpose of this action research project report was to increase engagement during independent reading for 32 fourth-grade students and 26 seventh-grade science students. At Site A, data was collected from August 27, 2012 through December 14, 2012. At Site B, data was collected from September 24, 2012 through December 14, 2012. Students' struggles with engagement during independent reading were apparent through observation of off-task reading behaviors. These behaviors included but were not limited to staring at books, flipping through pages, and browsing bookshelves. To document evidence of the problem, Teacher Researchers A and B used a Student Questionnaire, Reading Disengagement Checklist, Parent Questionnaire, and Teacher Questionnaire. To document evidence of the problem Teacher Researcher C used a Journaling Framework. Teacher Researchers A and B found the most prevalent off-task behavior revealed during pre-documentation was staring at books and flipping through pages (n = 17, 33%). Also results from the Student Questionnaire showed that students were only sometimes able to choose reading material at their level (n = 16, 52%), which could have affected students' abilities to engage during independent reading. Due to a change in school, subject, and grade level, Teacher Researcher C altered her project and used a Journaling Framework to reflect on feelings, thoughts, and student behaviors during pre-documentation. Teacher Researchers A and B implemented teacher conferencing, teacher modeling, and student choice. Teacher conferencing was conducted once a week during the daily reading block, which included individual conferencing with students, and students engaging in book talks with their peers. Teacher modeling included independently reading alongside students as a means of modeling reading behavior. Student choice involved opportunities to choose their independent reading material. Teacher Researcher C implemented teacher modeling and vocabulary development strategies. Teacher modeling encompassed demonstrating for students how to use non-fiction text features and think-aloud strategies. Vocabulary development strategies incorporated semantic mapping and Venn-diagrams. At the conclusion of the study, 59% (n=19) of students reported that they loved to read independently. The data also revealed that staring at books and flipping through pages had the largest decrease in off-task behaviors students exhibited from pre- to post- documentation. In conclusion, Teacher Researchers A and B found that teacher conferencing, modeling reading behaviors, and student choice in reading materials played an integral role in students' reading engagement. Due to changes of academic placement, Teacher Researcher C discovered more about classroom management than the original project intention of independent reading and engagement. The following are appended: (1) Student Questionnaire; (2) Reading Disengagement Checklist; (3) Parent Questionnaire; (4) Teacher Questionnaire; (5) Journaling Framework; (6) Non-Fiction Text Feature Scavenger Hunt; (7) Semantic Mapping; (8) Lost Headings; (9) Photosynthesis and Cellular Respiration Venn-diagram; (10) Jumbled Summary; and (11) Think-aloud Strategy Chart. (Contains 8 tables and 27 figures.)
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 4; Grade 7; Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Illinois