The relationship between the oral language proficiency and reading achievement of first grade Crow Indian children
Featherly, Bernadine Rebich
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The author believed that the problem she tried to solve - why Crow children from homes of low socioeconomic status have difficulty of learning to read with comprehension - was caused by something that was lacking in their preschool environment. She believed that this could be either helped or made worse by the way reading is taught. She wanted to find out what was lacking in their social environment. To gain answers she did an extensive literature review combined with empirical evidence from first graders in Crow schools. She concluded that language competency (how well the child was able to speak) was an important prerequisite for learning to read. Many of the Crow students had not reached the sufficient level of language proficiency, thus encountered trouble when trying to learn to read. Some of the recommendations from the study include: parents should read to their children from infancy, using their primary language (if they are bilingual). The books should be in their native language in the beginning, once the child reaches the age of 3 he should start listening to stories written in English. The stories should not only be read but discussed with the child so he fully understands them. Schools should keep their libraries open evenings and weekends and offer a story-hour each night.