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ERIC Number: EJ832228
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 10
ISSN: ISSN-1068-3844
Text Matters: Mexican Immigrant Parents Reading Their World
Larrotta, Clarena; Gainer, Jesse
Multicultural Education, v16 n2 p45-48 Win 2008
Based in a constructivist paradigm, socio-cultural views of literacy place a high degree of importance on how students connect to what they read. This means that instruction must follow constructivist principles and allow ample opportunity for discussion and learner-centered activities. In addition, this framework requires careful attention be given to text selection. Since readers construct meaning by connecting new material with prior knowledge, it is important that learners have opportunities to engage with texts that reflect their life experiences and their cultures. The after-school parent literacy project that is described in this article used a socio-cultural framework to view literacy practices. The goal of this family literacy project was to create a space for Mexican immigrant parents to practice reading comprehension strategies that they could implement while reading with their children at home. The program was designed around constructivist learning principles that positioned the parents as active learners who directed their own learning through discussion and other interactions in response to their readings. The texts that were selected were intended to draw on the parents' funds of knowledge as well as to connect to their immediate daily lives as adults and as immigrants in the United States. While the readings varied greatly in their content and style, it was found that they each had elements that made them serve well as springboards for further learning. The parents showed high levels of engagement with the readings that led to lively and informative discussions. While the readings were geared mainly towards adults, results show that the parents were often so excited by their high-level discussions that they ended up sharing these literacy-related discussions with their children. The authors conclude with the assertion that fostering adult literacy practices, as well as those of children, requires careful attention to the selection of relevant text.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A