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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32768

Title: The Past, the Present, and the Practice: An Exploration of the Relationship between Beginning Teachers' Childhood Literacy Experiences and their Literacy Teaching Practices
Authors: McGlynn-Stewart, Monica
Advisor: Kosnik, Clare
Department: Curriculum, Teaching and Learning
Keywords: elementary literacy
early childhood literacy
teacher education
beginning teachers
teachers' lives
literacy teaching
Issue Date: 30-Aug-2012
Abstract: Abstract This research investigated the influence of the childhood literacy learning experiences of 6 beginning elementary teachers on their literacy teaching practice. This qualitative case study employed 5 interviews and classroom observations of each participant over the first 3 years of his or her teaching. Three main findings emerged from the research. First, participants’ early literacy experiences shaped their identity as students. The participants’ images of themselves as students, in turn, influenced their images of themselves as teachers. Second, the participants’ early literacy learning experiences influenced the types of literacy environments and literacy activities that they provided for their students. Participants employed teaching approaches that had worked for them, or that they believed would have worked for them as students. Third, participants’ early literacy experiences influenced how they understood their students’ learning. The participants who had struggled as students were more focused on detecting and addressing the needs of their students who struggled. Implications for school literacy teaching include understanding and valuing the literacy knowledge and skills that young children bring to school and systematically addressing the needs of students who struggle with school literacy. Implications for preservice teacher education in literacy include an increased focus on supporting student teachers to reflect on how their early literacy learning affects their attitudes and assumptions about learning and teaching, more instruction on how to address the needs of struggling literacy learners, and the provision of a coherent teacher education program that combines theory and practice more effectively. Implications for in-service teacher education in literacy include providing induction programs that are tailored to meet the needs of individual beginning teachers, an expanded range of professional development options, and ongoing opportunities to engage in effective reflective practice. Implications for further research include investigations of the influence of early literacy learning on student achievement and on literacy teacher educators’ practice.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/32768
Appears in Collections:Doctoral

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