Date of Award

8-1-2007

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Education and Human Development

Abstract

Reading is more than knowing how to sound out the words. It also entails comprehension and meaning, making connections with prior knowledge and learning. This thesis project examines what types of quality instructional strategies can be implemented by a general education English Language Arts teacher in order to improve the reading comprehension of students who are reading below grade level. The literature review section discusses comprehending text, decoding skills, and building fluency with the intermediate student in mind. The six week active research for the project was conducted in a western New York suburban school district with five sixth grade students and used four different instructional strategies based on the study participant’s comprehension level. Extended Day program time, 50 minutes twice per week, was utilized for the research. Data was gathered from student questionnaires pre and post study as well as field notes, student interviews, classroom activities, and teacher reflections. Conclusions from the research data and observations note an increase in reading comprehension and student participation, and support the use of quality instructional strategies to increase reading comprehension in the intermediate grades.

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