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Drawing Out Students Critical Perspectives on Text through Modified Discourse Routines Francine Falk-Ross, Northern Illinois University

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Presentation on theme: "Drawing Out Students Critical Perspectives on Text through Modified Discourse Routines Francine Falk-Ross, Northern Illinois University"— Presentation transcript:

1 Drawing Out Students Critical Perspectives on Text through Modified Discourse Routines Francine Falk-Ross, Northern Illinois University Symposium Presentation for the International Reading Associations 52 nd Annual Convention, Toronto, Canada May 14, 2007 Handouts Online at: annual_program.htm

2 The Role of Classroom Discourse in Literacy Activities Students' learning in the classroom is tied to the instructional language routines that are set by the teacher and used by peers to question and respond to new information (Bernstein, 1990; Cazden, 2001; Wells, 1999; Wilkinson & Silliman, 2000). These instructional language patterns provide a context that influences learning and literacy development (Catts & Kamhi, 1999; Christie, Enz, & Vukelich, 1997, Gutierrez, 1995). Language through social interaction plays the key role in construction of new knowledge and mediation of learning (Vygotsky, 1978).

3 The Role of Classroom Discourse in Literacy Activities Often, students with language difficulties or language differences are at a disadvantage in classroom discussions and become marginalized in the classroom community (Lipsky & Gartner, 1997). Varying traditional questioning strategies to include more expanded forms motivates students to voice personal connections and draws students into literacy discussions with their class peers and the teacher (Almasi, 1994; Falk- Ross, 2002 ). The nature of language in the classroom, the need for more talk, and the vocabulary for talking require careful learning in order to draw out and support critical questions that extend students thinking.

4 Critical Literacy Theory Critical literacy theory derives from the work of Paulo Freire (1970), who described the importance of reading the world. All the theory and work in this area are focused on 4 main applications (Lewison, Flint, & Van Sluys, 2002): disrupting a common understanding to gain perspective; examining multiple viewpoints (different characters, different interest groups) thinking about power relationships between people, such as who stands to gain from this viewpoint. promoting social justice…reflecting and acting to change an inappropriate action or relationship.

5 Critical Talk in the Classroom Students need models and support to encourage and share their critical views of the texts they read through appropriate dialogue, led and guided by teachers (Dozier, Johnston, & Rogers, 2006; McLaughlin & DeVoogd, 2004). Students and teachers need to investigate deeply the situated context of text (Freire, 1970; Gee, 2001; Luke, 2000): the authors perspectives, the history of the text, the nature of the language and the message, the power moves that underlie text

6 The Nature of Language in the Classroom Traditional Discourse Teacher-Directed IRE/F Characteristics Monologic Transmission Model Questions with prespecified responses Expanded Discourse Forms Student-Directed Inquiry-Based Dialogic Discussions Small Group Conferences Critical Analysis Co-construction of Knowledge through Negotiation

7 SCIENCE/MATH TALK Vocabulary Definitions In your own words, how would you describe the meaning of the term chlorophyll ? What else do you know about that term? How do you know that? Would someone else please add more information. So, lets sum up. Do we agree that the term refers to……? How will this term apply to what we and our families know? (negotiated meaning, uptake). Problem-solving and Decision-making What steps did you follow to determine that result? How else could you have come to that decision? What information that you knew before helped lead you through that thinking process? How is this similar to the way you solve other problems? (higher level responses, personal analysis).

8 READING/LANGUAGE ARTS TALK Word Identification/Language Arts We know to use context to help us figure out words that are long or difficult. Tell us what phrases or sentences before or after this word help you to identify it? Where have you heard this word before? (scaffolding). What rules of language use do you observe in that word/sentence? When have you used that language form or word in your own conversations? (higher level response, connections). Comprehension What do you think the author was trying to tell us in that passage? Do you agree or disagree with the message? What do you think the different characters are thinking…lets consider their perspectives. What information in the text supports/substantiates your answer? Anyone else have an idea to add to that response? What if I told you that…..? (question uptake, negotiated meaning, additional information).

9 Research Study: One School The research study addresses developing a language- and vocabulary-building approach to support reading activities for marginalized students in a school district with a population that is ~90% Hispanic and bilingual. Reading and content area teachers were supported in their development of language/literacy knowledge and strategy suggestions for both remedial and classroom- based reading programs. Marginalized middle level students included classroom members who had language differences and language difficulties.

10 Implications Understanding the nature of pedagogic discourse and the effects of changes in language routines for students within educational interactions is an important endeavor for teacher educators and for preservice and practicing teachers. This practice has implications for teacher education preparation and professional development programs in the form of models for future placements and matching of professionals for program development.

11 References Almasi, (1994). The nature of fourth graders sociocognitive conflicts in peer-led and teacher-led discussions of literature. Reading Research Quarterly, 29 (4), 304-307. Bakhtin, M. M. (1986). Speech genres and other late essays. Austin, TX: University of Texas Press. Bernstein, B. (1990). The structuring of pedagogic discourse: Class codes and control (Vol. IV). London: Routledge and Kegan Paul. Catts, H. W., & Kamhi, A. G. (2004). Language and reading disabilities. Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Cazden, C. (2001). Classroom discourse, 2nd edition. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann. Collins, J. (1995). Discourse and resistance in urban elementary classrooms: A poststructuralist perspective. Paper presentation for the American Educational Research Association, San Francisco, CA., April 22, 1995. Dozier, C., Johnston, P. & Rogers, R. (2006). Critical literacy, critical teaching: Tools for preparing responsive teachers. New York: Teachers College Press. Falk-Ross, F. C. (2002). Classroom-based language and literacy intervention: A case studies approach. Boston: Allyn & Bacon Pearson. Freire, P. (1970). Pedagogy of the oppressed. New York: Coninuum. Gee, J. (2001). Reading as situated language: A sociocognitive perspective. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy, 44 (8), 714- 725. Gutierrez, K. (1995). Unpackaging academic discourse. Discourse Processes, 19(1), 21-37. Lewison, M., Flint, A. S., & Van Sluys, K. (2002). Taking on critical literacy: the journey of newcomers and novices. Language Arts, 79 (5), 382-392. Lipsky, D. K., & Gartner, A. (1997). Inclusion, school restructuring, and the remaking of American society. Harvard Educational Review, 66(4), 762-796. Luke, A. (2000). Critical literacy in Australia. Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, 43 (5), 448-461. McLaughlin, & DeVoogd, G. L. (2004). Critical literacy: Enhancing students comprehension of text. New York: Scholastic.National Middle School Association. (2003). This we believe: Developmentally responsive middle level schools. Westerville, OH: Author. Nystrand, M., Gamaron, A., Kachur, R., & Prendegast, C. (1997). Opening dialogue: Understanding the dynamics of language and learning in the English classroom. New York: Teachers College Press. Vukelich, C., Christie, J., & Enz, B. (2002). Helping young children learn language and literacy. Boston: Allyn & Bacon. Vygotsky, L. (1978). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press. Wells, G. (1999). Dialogic inquiry: Towards a sociological practice and theory of education. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Wilkinson, E.R., & Silliman, L.C. (2000). Classroom language and literacy learning. In M. Kamil, P.D. Pearson, & R. Barr (Eds.), Handbook of Reading Research: Volume III (pp. 337-360). Mahweh, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

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