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ERIC Number: EJ900648
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Oct
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 35
ISSN: ISSN-0034-0561
Young Children's Approaches to Books: The Emergence of Comprehension
Dooley, Caitlin McMunn
Reading Teacher, v64 n2 p120-130 Oct 2010
When does comprehension begin? This article addresses the question, and will help early childhood and elementary literacy educators understand how young children's comprehension, or meaning making, begins prior to conventional reading and emerges over time. Field note, video, and interview data were compiled during a three-year longitudinal study on emergent comprehension in children from age 2 to 5. Four phases--book as prop, book as whole, book as script, and book as text--detail how a group of 12 children used books during child-initiated events (e.g., play, pretend reading). Semiotic theory provides a lens to interpret these children's book-related interactions as evidence of emergent comprehension. In general, the children were gradually more attentive to function, topical content, image, and print, eventually showing the ability to merge multimodal signs to create textual meaning. (Contains 2 tables.)
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: Preschool Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A