The identification of home literacy factors and their relationship to middle grade students' reading achievement

Bolt, Dianne Elizabeth (1992) The identification of home literacy factors and their relationship to middle grade students' reading achievement. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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The purpose of the present investigation was to explore the relationship between selected home literacy factors and reading achievement in the middle grades and to determine whether there were significant differences according to school location (rural/urban), gender, grade level, age, and parental education. The following home factors were examined: parental reading habits, parental assistance, parental expectations, children's leisure reading habits, children's participation in cultural and extracurricular activities, and accessibility and use of reading materials. -- Researchers highlight the role played by parents in children's reading development and suggest that reading ability is strongly influenced by the importance of reading to the family, parent-child interactions, and the availability of home literacy materials (Greaney, 1986; Lee, 1984; Morrow, 1983). However, existing studies on home and parental variables and reading have usually focused on preschool, primary, or elementary school children. Thus, a study of middle grade students in Newfoundland and Labrador was undertaken. -- Participants in the study were 530 fourth, sixth, and eighth grade students and their parents from five randomly selected rural schools and two selected schools in an urban centre. A standardized test was used as a measure of reading ability and a parent questionnaire was developed to identify the nature of support provided for home literacy. Complete information was obtained on 314 parents and their children. Means, standard deviations, Pearson product-moment correlations, and multiple regression coefficients were used to analyze the data. -- Important conclusions emanating from this study revealed that the quality of the home literacy environment and the kinds of interactions that occur in the home have a positive influence upon middle grade students' reading achievements. Parents' level of education showed significant but low correlations with parental reading habits, accessibility and use of reading materials, and parental expectations. Overall, urban students outperformed rural students of the same age and grade. -- The findings of this study suggest the need for educators to recognize the importance of the home in influencing students' reading achievements and to encourage greater parental participation in children's educational development. Consideration should also be given to improving the social, cultural, and economic status of Newfoundland families through a long-range program of adult education.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 10172
Additional Information: Bibliography :l. 148-157.
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1992
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Parental influences; Reading--Parent participation.

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