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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Curriculum and Instruction

First Advisor

Marilyn Draheim

First Committee Member

Harriett Arnold

Second Committee Member

Mari Irvin

Third Committee Member

Rachelle Hackett

Fourth Committee Member

Timothy Rasinski


Many children in low-income areas are failing in schools, frequently due to substandard reading skills. Research has shown that early intervention can help alleviate this problem. However, most early intervention strategies are very expensive and labor intensive for school personnel. Furthermore, it is often not clear what programs will work with a certain student population due to their widely diverse backgrounds. In low-income schools, parents are often an ignored resource. Many teachers complain about lack of parent involvement, and yet most do nothing to solicit it. Using parents to help provide beginning reading practice for their children could be a way to involve families in the school and help children gain vital reading skills. This study investigated the effects of parent training in a fluency reading method called “Paired Reading” among low-income first grade students. A one-hour training sessions was offered at two different times to the parents of four first grade classes in an urban elementary school. Thirty-one participated. The children of these parents constituted the experimental group. This group was pretested and posttested to assess reading fluency, sight word recognition and reading attitudes. Forty-one students at a neighboring elementary school acted as the control group for this study. Qualitative interviews were also conducted on experimental group parents and teachers. The results indicated significant gains in reading fluency, sight word recognition and attitudes about reading. Also, there was a significant relationship between the minutes a child spent practicing Paired Reading with the parent and the amount of improvement the child made. Interview data suggested that parents welcomed this type of training session and enjoyed doing the activities with their children. Unfortunately, the interview data also indicated that teachers were negative about the efficacy of parent training sessions and had no immediate plans to implement such classes.




9780599568402 , 0599568402

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