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Improving Literacy Environments and Experiences for Children Birth to Five: Research and Resources Nell K. Duke & Annie M. Moses, Michigan State University.

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Presentation on theme: "Improving Literacy Environments and Experiences for Children Birth to Five: Research and Resources Nell K. Duke & Annie M. Moses, Michigan State University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Improving Literacy Environments and Experiences for Children Birth to Five: Research and Resources Nell K. Duke & Annie M. Moses, Michigan State University & the Literacy Achievement Research Center

2 Plan for this Presentation Results of survey and observation study Professional resources for improving literacy for children birth to five Excerpts of a videotape on promoting emergent literacy in child care settings Strategies for improving literacy for children birth to five

3 Survey and Observation Study Very little research has examined literacy environments and activities available in child care settings. To our knowledge, no research has examined this in family and group home care settings. Few needs assessments related to professional development around literacy birth to five are available.

4 Research Questions Survey: What do center-based and home-based child care providers report that they know about and do with respect to emergent literacy environments and activities? Observation Study: What do center-based child care providers actually do with respect to providing emergent literacy activities and environments? Survey and Observation Study: To what extent do child care providers reports match what is observed in centers with respect to emergent literacy environments and activities?

5 Participants Survey: A stratified (by care setting type) random sample of 337 center, group and home providers from across Michigan Observation: 15 centers within 45 minutes of MSU (randomly selected but with some centers declining to participate) 6 observed rooms had mostly 2-year-olds 3 observed rooms had mostly 3-year-olds 6 observed rooms had mostly 4-year-olds

6 Measures Survey: Questions related to: Providers use of ELA with infants, toddlers and preschoolers Demographic information Access to different media and preferences for receiving professional development materials Response rate of 57.1%

7 Measures, cont. Observation: PELLC survey PELLC observation form: identifying and background information activities (whether activity was observed, how many times, and for how many minutes) characteristics of the print environment, and final notes and comments ELLCO (Early Language and Literacy Classroom Observation Record; Smith & Dickinson, with Sangeorge & Anastasopoulos, 2001): literacy environment checklist literacy activities rating scale

8 Measures Quality Survey: Internal consistency, when measurable, high (Cronbachs alpha.917 -.920) Observation: Correlated well with ELLCO on comparable items Rankings of centers correlated.74 Survey and Observation: Generally corresponded well but with discrepancies on some items

9 The Survey: Select Results Reading storybooks for each age was the highest reported ELA happening at least once a day: For toddlers: 86.4% For preschoolers: 89.4% Other highly reported activities (between 80.5 – 87.5%) include: Singing songs, having children look at books of their choice, have children draw or write (preschoolers), and including reading and writing materials in play centers (preschoolers)

10 The Survey: Select Results Some of the lower reported ELA happening at least once a day (for toddlers & preschoolers): Act out stories or have children do so (toddlers: 15.1%, preschoolers: 19.0%) Teach parents how to read and write with children (toddlers: 7.7%, preschoolers: 8.6%) Read information books or nonfiction (toddlers: 27.5%, preschoolers: 37.7%) Show children how people use reading and writing in everyday life (toddlers: 26.9%, preschoolers: 36.5%) Talk about or point to writing displayed in the room (toddlers: 44.7%, preschoolers: 54.9%)

11 The Survey: Select Results Reporting 30 Minutes or More of Literacy Activities Infants (%)Toddlers (%) Preschooler s (%) Kindergarte ners (%) NEVER 15.53.81.06.1 1-2 DAYS/ WEEK 28.014.06.29.8 3-4 DAYS/ WEEK 19.821.919.314.3 EVERY DAY 36.760.473.569.8 n 207265306245

12 The Survey: Select Results Reporting 30 Minutes or More of Literacy Activities 30 minutes or more least common with infants, then toddlers, then preschoolers Even in preschool, more than 1 in 4 centers did not report providing 30 minutes or more Center settings generally reported more time with literacy than family or group settings (statistically significant differences for all age groups)

13 The Survey: Select Results Primary Caregiver Reported Understanding "developmentally appropriate" (%) "emergent literacy" (%) NO UNDERSTANDING.64.6 LITTLE UNDERSTANDING.613.4 SOME UNDERSTANDING 19.334.5 STRONG UNDERSTANDING 79.547.6 n 331328 Note: Reported understanding generally lower in family and group care settings than in center settings.

14 Observations: Select Results Total number of minutes spent in ELA: Most number of minutes observed: 210 minutes (43.75% of the 8 hours involved ELA) Least number of minutes observed: 27 minutes (5.63% of the 8 hours involved ELA)

15 Observations: Select Results Storybook reading observed in all but one site (4.65 minutes - 60.71 minutes total) (information book reading observed in only three sites) Other commonly observed activities include: singing (13 centers) asking children to explain something (9 centers) allowing children to look at books of their choice (9 centers)

16 Observations: Select Results Rarely observed activities include: writing in front of or with children (4 and 3 centers respectively) tell stories or have children act out or tell stories (1, 2 and 1 centers respectively) encourage or teach parents to read and write with children at home (not observed at all) show children how people use reading and writing in everyday life (2 centers) take children to library or visit mobile library (1 and 0 centers respectively) help children learn to read and write their names (6 centers) or other words (2 centers)

17 Observations Results: Access to Books

18 Observations Results: Books Displayed

19 Observations Results: Play Areas with Print

20 Observations Results: Number of Labels & Captions

21 Observations Results: Amount of Print on Walls

22 Professional Resources for Improving Literacy Birth to Five College and university courses District, regional, or state professional development initiatives Professional conferences Early Literacy Curricula, for example: Breakthrough to Literacy Literacy Express High/Scope And many others!

23 Professional Resources for Improving Literacy Birth to Five Professional books, for example : Starting Out Right (Burns, Snow, & Griffin, 1999) Learning to Read and Write: Developmentally Appropriate Practices for Young Children (Neuman, Copple, & Bredekamp, 2000) New IRA Preschool Literacy Series Literacy and the Youngest Learner: Best Practices for Educators of Children from Birth to Five (Bennett-Armistead, Duke, & Moses, 2005) And many more! Videotapes and hypermedia materials

24 PELLC (Promoting Emergent Literacy In Licensed Care) Videotape Focuses on research-based strategies for promoting emergent literacy in child care settings Features photographs and videoclips from exemplary group and center settings (includes infants, toddlers and preschoolers) Includes commentary from Governor Jennifer Granholm, two literacy professors, and child care providers Video authors: Duke, Moses, Billman, Zhang & Bennett- Armistead; Video partners: MSU FACT Coalition, Michigan FIA, Michigan Community Coordinated Child Care

25 PELLC (Promoting Emergent Literacy In Licensed Care) Videotape Approximately 90 minutes, with six sections: 1. Promoting emergent literacy (20m) 2. Aspects of emergent literacy (12m) 3. Creating a rich literacy environment (18m) 4. Read aloud (16m) 5. Other literacy activities (14m) 6. Literacy beyond the walls of the care environment (16m)

26 Part 1: Introduction Importance of literacy Fundamental concepts underlying videotape: developmentally appropriate practice emergent literacy responsive teaching Importance of oral language Strategies for using the videotape

27 Part 2: Aspects of Literacy to Develop in Early Childhood Concepts of print Phonological awareness Letter-sound knowledge Word recognition Genre knowledge Understanding of text Production of text Interest in and love of literacy and learning World knowledge

28 Part 4: Read Aloud Why: Build phonological awareness & letter-sound knowledge Build concepts of print Build comprehension skills Build knowledge about the world How: Lap reading with one or few children Interactive reading Expressive reading Book Selection

29 Part 6: Literacy Beyond the Walls of the Care Environment Literacy outdoors Literacy on field trips Environmental print walks Field trips to literacy-focused destinations Field trips to other destinations Connecting with families

30 Connecting with Families Incentive programs Take home bags and cubbies Literacy-related notices Modeling and documentation Funds of knowledge activities Surveys/focus groups/interviews/home visits Workshops and family coaching

31 An Example of an Effective Parent Involvement Program for Language in K Project EASE (Jordan, Snow, & Porche, 2000) Five parent coaching sessions, one per month, on different themes related to language interactions around books Followed a discussion outline; provided a take home guide; followed by parent-child practice activity For three weeks following: scripted activities, involving books, sent home related to that months theme The five themes were words, words, words; telling personal event narratives; discussing storybook narratives; discussing information-rich books; learning about letters and sounds. Front

32 Strategies for Improving Literacy for Children Birth to Five Implementing state-level initiatives (Michigans approach) Making college and university courses accessible Providing literacy-focused regional, local or care-setting-based professional development Conducting family/parent education programs Involving the K-12 community

33 Ways the K-12 Community Can Promote Emergent Literacy in Child Care Settings Hold workshops for or with local child care providers e.g., Important knowledge skills for kindergarten e.g., Working together: A summit of child care providers and elementary educators Distribute literacy-related materials to child care providers e.g., Books and videotapes Host literacy-related celebrations for children in child care (and elementary school) e.g., A read-in, plays, and sing-alongs Service learning programs involving child care settings as service sites

34 On Your Way Out... Please sign up if you would like a copy of the paper about the survey and observation study Please sign up if you would like to be notified if/when PELLC videotape is available for sale at cost Please be in touch if you would like to pursue a doctorate specializing in early literacy


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