Date of Award

12-2011

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Education and Human Development

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to investigate the benefits of reader’s theater and how it related to student’s engagement, fluency and comprehension development. Two fifth grade case study students were chosen to participate in the six-week study. The students both attend an urban school and are from low-income families. Both students were recommended by the reading specialist to help improve their reading fluency and comprehension skills. In order to determine the effectiveness of reader’s theater, several forms of data collection were used. Observational notes, interview questions, running records and comprehension questions were chosen to gather the information necessary for the study. The students were given a variety of reader’s theater scripts to choose from for their study. After browsing through the different scripts, the participants chose their top three. The six-week study was based on their interactions around these texts. The student’s literacy progress was carefully recorded during the six weeks. The results indicated that reader’s theater helped students to improve their reading rate, accuracy, expressive reading and comprehension. It also fostered confidence and creativity among the participants. The principal conclusion was that reader’s theater supported students’ reading development by building confidence and helped students improve their fluency and comprehension skills.

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