Date of Award

5-2002

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Education and Human Development

First Advisor

Dr. Arthur Smith

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of teacher-led book talks in positively influencing students to select literature from a variety of genres. The subjects of this study consisted of twenty-four fifth grade students from a suburban elementary school in western New York who were exposed to teacher-led book talks designed to present a variety of literary genres.

Within a weekly cycle, participants were exposed daily to teacher-led book talks, a whole class brainstorming session, and a journal prompt intended to guide their reflections on a particular genre. The teacher-led book talks were comprised of oral readings from a selection of literature that represented major literary genres including non-fiction, fiction, fantasy/science fiction, folktale, and poetry. The whole class brainstorming session offered students an opportunity to record commonalities discovered within a genre, thereby enabling them to effectively classify literature they choose to read. The journal reflection provided students an opportunity to draw upon their weekly genre study linking knowledge to appreciation.

Utilizing the school library's electronic database, a comparative analysis of literature selections pre- and post-book talk sessions determined the effectiveness (influence) teacher-led book talks have had on self-selection of literature. The data indicate that genre selections broadened for some students, but not all.

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