Committee Chair

Ryan, Amye

Committee Member

Ross, David F.; Biderman, Michael D.

Department

Dept. of Psychology

College

College of Arts and Sciences

Publisher

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Place of Publication

Chattanooga (Tenn.)

Abstract

A number of early literacy skills, including oral language skills, phonological awareness, alphabet knowledge, and print knowledge, have been identified as precursor skills to later literacy skills and outcomes. Previous research has documented that many early childhood educators lack adequate knowledge and skills to implement practices necessary to foster emergent language and literacy development. This research was conducted to examine early childhood educators’ awareness of their classroom practices supporting language and literacy skills. A 48-item self-rating survey was created based upon dimensions measured by a widely used reliable and valid observation tool. The observation tool was used in 34 teachers’ classrooms from 14 childcare centers. Observer ratings were then compared to teacher self-ratings. Significant differences existed between observer scores and participants’ self-rating scores on the Language and Literacy subscale with large discrepancies in areas related to phonological awareness implementation, promoting vocabulary, consistently guiding the use of books for meaningful purposes, supporting children’s emergent writing skills, and providing an appropriate writing environment. There were no significant correlations between observers’ and teachers’ ratings. Findings have important implications for further research to examine early childhood educators’ awareness of their teaching practices and classroom environment in the areas of language and literacy. The value of teachers knowing areas in which they can improve is that they will be able to seek appropriate resources and help in those specific areas of need.

Degree

M. S.; A thesis submitted to the faculty of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Science.

Date

12-2013

Subject

Literacy; Literacy programs; Reading (Elementary); Reading (Preschool)

Keyword

early childhood educators; self-rating; literacy environment; preschool; language environment

Discipline

Child Psychology | Psychology

Document Type

Masters theses

Extent

viii, 77 leaves

Language

English

Rights

Under copyright.

License

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/

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