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ERIC Number: EJ782198
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Feb
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 14
ISSN: ISSN-1081-3004
"The Owl Cried": Reading Abstract Literary Concepts with Adolescent ESL Students
Wolfe, Paula
Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, v47 n5 p402-413 Feb 2004
According to recent U.S. census reports, while the population of the United States increased by 10%, the population speaking languages other than English at home increased by 38% between 1980 and 1990. One in six of all youth in the United States, ages 14 to 19, either speaks a language other than English at home, was born in a foreign country, or both. As the number of linguistic-minority students in U.S. high schools continues to climb, more and more discussion about how to help these students achieve success centers on the issue of classroom language and interaction. This excerpt of classroom discourse is noteworthy, because it offers an example of high school English learners who display the ability to discuss complex literary topics. Although the ability to identify and understand abstract concepts is certainly a goal for adolescent English as second language readers, very often these readers get stuck doing basic decoding exercises. This article is an attempt to explore how one group of adolescent ESL readers developed the ability to read in more "adult-like" ways, to identify and understand abstract literary concepts like symbolism and theme.
International Reading Association. 800 Barksdale Road, P.O. Box 8139, Newark, DE 19714-8139. Tel: 800-336-7323; Fax: 302-731-1057; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: High Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States