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Summer Reading Moves to Cyberspace: A Revealing Collaboration Multiple Faces of Collaboration CISSL-ILILE Research Symposium Kent State University Dr.

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Presentation on theme: "Summer Reading Moves to Cyberspace: A Revealing Collaboration Multiple Faces of Collaboration CISSL-ILILE Research Symposium Kent State University Dr."— Presentation transcript:

1 Summer Reading Moves to Cyberspace: A Revealing Collaboration Multiple Faces of Collaboration CISSL-ILILE Research Symposium Kent State University Dr. Ya-Ling Lu and Carol Gordon 18 May 2007

2 Does Summer Reading Matter? The Faucet Theory During school year learners gains remarkably similar for students from diverse socio-economic backgrounds (Entwistle, Alexander & Olson, 1997, 2000) Family income was best predictor of reading comprehension and word recognition loss (Cooper et al, 1996) Middle, upper class showed one month loss; Disadvantaged children showed three months of grade-level equivalency (ibid.) Achievement gap increases throughout elementary years. Difference between high- and low-income in CAT reading scores (as % of sd);1 st grade: 68% 3 rd grade: 98% 8 th grade: 114% (Alexander & Entwistle, 1996) SPED/ELL children experience greater effects (Cooper et al., 1996; Sargent & Fidler, 1987)

3 Free Voluntary Reading… Has strong positive effect on ELL students (Elley, 1998) Results in more reading and better writing (Kim, 2004) Those who read more do better on language acquisition tests (Stokes, Krashen & Kartchner, 1998) Students who read more, know more (Filback & Krashen, 2002)

4 FVR Effects (Krashen, 2004) Duration Less than 7 months Positive 8 No Difference 14 Negative 3 7 months-1 year9100 Duration Greater than 1 year 820 Findings: In-school free reading programs are consistently effective. In 51 of 54 comparisons, (94%) readers do as well or better than readers in traditional programs. In the cases of no difference, free reading emerges as just as good as traditional instruction, which confirms that free reading results in literacy growth. Finding: Studies that last longer show more positive results.

5 The Collaboration: Three Sides to the Story Traditional English Teachers Progressive English Teachers One Warrior Librarian

6 There is nothing so practical as a good theory (Kurt Lewin) The Purpose of Summer Reading People who say they read more read better (Krashen, 2004), therefore the primary purpose of the program is to encourage students to read more. In order to encourage students to read more the primary purpose of summer reading is reading for fun rather than for academic purposes. The program offers students choice because choice is an important element in reading engagement (Schraw, et al., 1998). This includes the choice to pursue personal reading interests. To this end the school librarian administers a survey to students to collect their recommendations for book titles. Staff recommendations are collected through email.

7 Research-based Decisions Summer Reading Projects Student projects accommodate multiple intelligences (Gardner, 1993) and thinking styles (Sternberg, 1997) as well as options for written work. Since …results suggest that schools can encourage children to read more by also requiring them to complete a short writing activity based on their summer reading activities…. and that students who fulfilled teacher requirements by writing about their summer book… are predicted to read more books than their classmates who did not complete these activities (Kim, 2004b, p. 185). Reading responses include writing activities. Reading response projects reflect activities students enjoy in their leisure time are grounded in reading response described as the aesthetic stance in transactional theory (Rosenblatt, 1978).

8 Going Digital A Reading Program, not a Reading List The summer reading program is web-based because, Virtually all Net Gen students were using computers by the time they were 16 to 18 years of age… Among children ages 8 to 18, 96 percent have gone online. Seventy-four percent have access at home, and 61 percent use the Internet on a typical day. (Jones, 2002) In a study that altered text instructions in an assignment to a graphic layout, there were fewer refusals to do the assignment and post-test score increased. (Prensky, 2001) Since the net generation is not only attracted to image-rich environments, but is more comfortable with them, the website is visually attractive with lots of colorful graphics.

9 Reading Takes You Places The Website us/bhs/Library/ SummerReadingProgram.htm

10 What can we learn about collaboration among English teachers and between teachers and the school librarian? What were the responses from students and teachers about this collaborative product? Did students learn better? Research Questions

11 Methodology Student survey: –550 questionnaires were distributed –288 were returned (returning rate 52%) –5 were invalid –283 were used for analysis Male: Female = 53%: 47% CP1: CP2: Honors = 15%: 47%: 38% Teacher interview: –Interviews with 11 English teachers

12 Teachers response: Did more students read? More students turned in projects

13 Student response: Did more students read? Participation rate: 90% (256 out of 283 students) Non-participation rate: 10% (27 out of 283 students) Male: female = 14%: 4% CP1: CP2: Honors = 33%: 10%: 0 Participants and Non-Participants 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 CP1 (Male) CP1 (Female) CP2 (Male) CP2 (Female) HONORS (Male) HONORS (Female) Participant Non-participant

14 Teacher response: Did students read more? The completion rate of projects is higher, but…

15 Student response: Did students read more books? Students read an average of 3.26 books (3 were required) CP1 average of books read was 1.2 books Girls continue to read more than boys (3.79 books to 2.77 books)

16 Reading Preference Realistic and historical fiction (70 percent), fantasy and science fiction (16 percent), and non-fiction (12 percent) Non-fiction Nearly 2/3 of the non-fiction titles are reported by male students. 13 percent of female students and 25 percent of male students report reading at least one non-fiction book. Honors and CP2 students read more non-fiction books than CP1 students (33%: 22%: 4%).

17 Teacher response: Multiple reading lists The multiple lists were compiled through the collaborative recommendations from students and teachers and staff. Some thought there were too many choices and that students, especially CP1 students, were overwhelmed.

18 Student response: Multiple reading lists Most students liked the freedom and choices Staff and Student Pix was among the top three book lists that students used to browse. CP1 students wanted more choices

19 Teacher response: The grade unspecified reading lists Some students chose to read below their level It might help CP1 more if they were be given specific book(s) to read

20 Student response: The grade unspecified reading lists The majority of students liked the grade unspecified reading lists. No CP1 students wanted to go back to the old grade specified reading lists, but a few Honors students would prefer going back to the old system. I feel I can read anything now. (from a CP1 student)

21 Putting it onlinean incentive? Not clear 25 respondents had no computer access at home. –Two of them did not participate the SRP. –23 respondents did. No blogging. Few used search feature to get books

22 Where did students get their books for summer reading? 40% got their books from local bookstore 38% from public libraries 36% from home 15% from school library 13% from a friend or relative 7% purchased books online.

23 Teacher response: Did students learn better, or learn anything? Some teachers thought they did not see any drastic leap or drop. The program was, to them, simply different. Other teachers believed that the freedom this new web- based reading program gave students would, in the long run, if not immediately, encourage students, especially unmotivated students, to be more creative and independent in thinking and learning.

24 Student response: Did students learn better, or learn anything? Civil war history Globalization Different cultures Different authors Vocabulary Critically analyze a book (CP2 and Honors) My family Gaining self-esteem Deal with friends that drink and use drug Not to give up when time is hard Be respectful Stay close with family no matter what happens Time management Think stuff through before acting (CP1, CP2, and Honors)

25 What we learned Reading can be very personal and private. Reading has latent effects that tests cannot measure. CP1 students have particular reading interests, and they value life lessons more than information in the books. Non-fiction can be more appealing to male students than to female students (25% to 13%). Non-fiction reading and academic achievement: –causality uncertain –CP1: CP2: Honors=4%: 22%: 33%

26 Questions for further study What is the purpose of summer reading? How can we motivate low achieving students to read? How can we better address the reading needs of boys? How can the public library play a significant role in supporting the schools goals for summer reading?

27 Discussion Was this collaboration successful?

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