My research question is: “To what extent will parent involvement in home literacy activities enhanced by school-to-home communication technology affect student achievement in early literacy skills?” My study will include 10 families, who will receive short, phonemic awareness activities to do with their children daily. These activities will reinforce the lessons students are learning in class. Parents will also receive reminders, resources, and opportunities to ask questions via our district’s new parent communication tool, ParentSquare.
The last three articles I found on my topic were:
“Investigation of a parent-directed intervention designed to promote early literacy skills in preschool children” was a great find because this article layed out a few specific strategies that I hope to find useful. The parent-directed intervention in this study used a step-by-step approach to teaching phonological awareness skills. For example, first, the parent would ask the child a yes or no comparison question like “Do rat and run begin with the same sound?”. Next, the parent would ask the child to produce a word with the same beginning sound as a given word, like “Name a word that begins with the same sound as the word ‘rip.’” Finally, the parent would ask the child to produce the single phoneme that is the onset: “What sound does the word ‘rap’ begin with?” The increasing difficulty of each stage is appealing, and I am going to try to work this kind of activity into my parent intervention program.
“Examining an Extended Home Literacy Model: The Mediating Roles of Emergent Literacy Skills and Reading Fluency” is an article that builds on the work of one of the seminal authors on the topic of home literacy practices and their relationships to reading achievement and pleasure, Monique Senechal. This study was a relationship study. The relationships between certain practices, such as teaching children the names of the letters in the alphabet, or reading books together were compared to outcomes such as phonemic awareness, fluency, and vocabulary. While this study is nothing like my research plan, I still learned alot from it. I learned that I need to make the parent activities highly specific in order to achieve the outcome I am looking for. For example, my assessment will be on letter-sound fluency, so I need to make sure that the activities focus on only those skills, even though there are so many enticing activities to choose from… I want to keep the activities super short and focused so that there is a better chance of parents sustaining participation as well as the learning effect I am seeking.
“Texting for increasing parental involvement and student performance” was a really disappointing article to read… I got really excited because it seemed really close to what I want to do. However, this study was done with high schoolers in a science class. Texts sent to parents were concerning homework, attendance, and general information. The texts did not seem to affect students’ grades or attendance. Although I was initially discouraged by this study, I realized that my parent activities are much more direct, specific, and beneficial to students. The texts/emails that parents will receive will hopefully just increase participation and clarity, and I am hoping that the activities will be effective in producing significant growth, even in the short amount of time we will have.
Two out of three is not bad, right? One thing I’ve noticed is that all of these articles start to blend together in my mind, were it not for our handy dandy lit review graphic organizers. These tools are a great resource in keeping things straight, quick access to the articles themselves (I linked them in), and a quick place to store APA citations. Onward, ho!