ERIC Number: EJ860796
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Reference Count: 23
Girls as "Struggling Readers": Delineating the Sociopolitical and Sociocultural Terrains of Books and Reading. IRA Outstanding Dissertation Award for 2009
Graff, Jennifer M.
Reading Research Quarterly, v44 n4 p357-359 Oct-Dec 2009
Many people consider books to be one of life's treasures and often embark on pleasurable and transformative literary journeys. Unfortunately, struggling readers' journeys are often arduous, if not painful. Recent reading mandates under No Child Left Behind often limit the scope of literary resources purchased with federal funds and appear to alter conceptions of what reading is and what quality texts are, without necessarily including student readers' input. The dissonance between what teachers and students consider "engaging reads" and text accessibility disparities between low and high socioeconomic communities further compound the problematic literary journeys of economically disadvantaged youth who struggle with reading. Research indicating the power of self-selection of reading materials, continual and rich reading opportunities, and the ever-expanding range of youth's preferred reading resources continue to fuel inquiries about how educators can provide youth with a rich repertoire of reading material. Decades of book-selection research have provided much knowledge of youths' book selections and preferences over time. Yet, most book-selection studies have overlooked economically disadvantaged youth and struggling readers and have neither extended beyond survey data nor extended beyond youths' initial selection rationales. In addition, these studies have often assumed that children select books for the primary purpose of reading and actually read their books upon selection. This article describes the results of the author's eight-month, qualitative, book-selection study with struggling female readers. Her focus on struggling female readers stems from the social perception that reading is a literacy practice at which girls excel and which they enjoy and from National Assessment of Educational Progress data indicating that a substantial number of girls continue to struggle with reading. Although she labels this study a "book-selection study," it extends beyond girls' book-selection rationales to include their book interactions and conceptions of reading.
Descriptors: Reading Materials, Females, Federal Legislation, Reading Material Selection, Economically Disadvantaged, Disadvantaged Youth, National Competency Tests, Social Cognition, Books, Discourse Analysis, Evaluation
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Elementary Reading Attitude Survey