Reading Motivation by Alicia Fallaw 2nd Grade Dobson Elementary
Background • I only had a handful of students engaged and motivated enough to read independently during SSR • When I asked why one student was just sitting there, he proceeded to tell me he just did not like reading and did not feel like reading that day. • Each year I find myself in the same situation with a group of students that for the most part are not motivated to read.
What Research Says… • Research suggests having a couch or beanbags for students to curl up in and read. One article even suggested having an old canoe. • Reading needs to be given the “Wow” factor. • The article discussed the importance of read alouds and that you should read aloud to your class with the drama of an Oscar winner. • Another article suggested that allowing students to share about books they have read could also be a motivator.
Research Questions • What strategies work to motivate children to read? • What role does choice and interest play in the motivation process?
Methods Participants • 23 students • 13 girls & 10 boys • 7 Hispanic, 15 Caucasian, 1 Bi-racial • 14 of my students are considered at risk due to low reading achievement and ability • 2/3 of our school are free & reduced lunch • 1/3 are Hispanic
Intervention/Instruction Procedures • Study was conducted over a 6 week period. • All 23 students were involved. • I implemented 6 strategies over the 6 week period.
Free choice during Self Selected Reading & take home reading. • Students were allowed to read out of any book basket. • They had free choice of the book they took home for reading each night. • My principal really didn’t approve of this strategy.
Reading comprehension cubes and spinner • Cubes & spinner ask comprehension questions. • Students were more motivated to pay attention because they knew they would get the opportunity to answer questions from the spinner or cubes.
Time For Kids • The school paid for a subscription for each child in my class for one year. • The first issue was on frogs. • We went on line and listened to the frog chorus. • They started checking out books from the library about related topics we read about.
Moonchair • I drew a child’s name randomly each day. • They were provided additional reading materials such as seasonal books. • They never let me forget to draw a new name each day.
Sharing with the class • They were sharing with their neighbors • They begged to get up and share with the class. • This held them accountable for the information. • Helped them do better retelling stories to me as well.
Data Collection • Garfield survey before & after • On task behavior checklist • Reading conference form • Anecdotal notes • Interest survey at the end
Data Analysis • Compared pre & post Garfield scores • Created a color coded spreadsheet • Recreational: Pre-test 57% of my class was below 50%ile • Post-test 39 % below 50% ile • Academic: 57% below 50% ile • Post-test 26 % below 50% ile • Total raw score:61% below 50% ile • Post-test 35% below 50% ile
Data Analysis Continued • I Did an analysis on Garfield survey • The 2 questions that got the most negative responses were… • #7 “Do you like to read during the summer?” • #8 “Would you like to read rather than play?” • I Sorted my notes by what I found in common. I found 3 main categories: Free choice, Sharing with other students, & sharing what they learned with me.
Results: What I found out… • Motivation was increased • Students looked forward to SSR • I saw an improvement in academic reading scores as well • They enjoyed sharing about the books they had read. • They started checking out books on topics we had been studying in class. • Overall, I went from 61% of my class not liking reading down to 35 % being below 50% ile.
Discussion • I now know that it is the little things that make a big difference. (ex. the moonchair) • My lower level students made the most growth on the survey. • Another teacher changed the way she did take home reading because of my study. • The drawback to free choice was less comprehension during SSR conferences.
Future Direction • In the future I would like to extend this research study to determine the link between motivation and comprehension. Comprehension is the only negative aspect of the study and I want to find a way to have motivation as well as comprehension.
References • Braxton, Barbara. (2004). Encouraging Students to Read for Pleasure. Teacher Librarian, v31, 39-40. Retrieved September 12, 2005. • Cunningham, Patricia and Hall, Dorothy P. A Guide to the Four Blocks Literacy Model. • Hunter, Phyllis. (2004). Classroom Libraries Level the Playing Field. Instructor, v113, 36-40. Retrieved September 12, 2005. • Joyce, Marilyn. 2003. Fostering Reading through Intrinsic Motivation: An Action Research Study. Knowledge Quest v32 no1, 39-40. Retrieved September 12, 2005. • Kragler, Sherry & Nolley, Christine. (1996) Student choices: book selection strategies of fourth graders. Reading Horizons, v36, 354-365. Retrieved October 20, 2005. • McKenna, Michael & Kear, Dennis J. (1990) Measuring attitude toward reading: A new tool for teachers. The Reading Teacher, 626-639