Using children's literature to foster language development and to improve the writing ability of a grade one class

Dalton, Margaret R. (1985) Using children's literature to foster language development and to improve the writing ability of a grade one class. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

The study is concerned with using literature and certain related follow-up activities to familiarize a grade one class, consisting of eighteen children, with alternate forms of writing, and with the effects of such an exposure upon the form and quality of their written language. The study was carried out over a twelve week period during which time the children were read selections from the genres of fairy tales, fantasy and poetry on a regular daily basis. Fairy tales were presented to the children during weeks one to four. Fantasy was presented during weeks five to eight. Poetry was shared with the children on a daily basis during the entire study but it received its intensive focus during weeks nine to twelve. Certain features of each genre were highlighted both before and after the reading. Following the reading, a particular related activity was also included. During their daily forty minute writing sessions, the children were specifically asked to write fairy tales, fantasy or poetry depending upon the particular genre being emphasized at that time. -- Results of the study clearly indicated that the children had matured sufficiently through their literary experiences to allow them to move beyond their egocentric worlds to produce alternate forms of writing with distinguishable features which could be classified as fairy tale, fantasy and poetry. It was also indicated that exposure to literature resulted in a noticeable improvement in children's language development in terms of their vocabulary and sentence structure, as well as an improvement in their spelling ability. The results further revealed that as a result of exposure to literature, children's writings contained various literary conventions including characterization, dialogue, plot, time and setting, as well as an extensive increase in figurative language. -- The study highly recommends the constant use of children's literature as a means to foster young children's language development and to improve their writing ability.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/4442
Item ID: 4442
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 278-285.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1985
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Language arts (Primary); Children's literature--Study and teaching; Children--Writing

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