Read-alouds in kindergarten classrooms: A moment-by-moment approach to analyzing teacher-child interactions

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The aim of the study was to explore teacher–child interaction in 24 whole-class read-aloud sessions in Chilean kindergarten classrooms serving children from low socioeconomic backgrounds. Fifteen sessions focused on story meaning, and nine focused on language coding/decoding. We coded teacher and child turns for their function (i.e., teacher initiation, child response, teacher follow-up), type (e.g., open/closed questions, directives; confirmation, elaboration), and complexity (i.e., literal/low vs. inferential/high language). We found considerable variability in reading approaches. Teachers in meaning-oriented sessions initiated more inferential conversations, whereas in code-oriented sessions the majority of initiations had low complexity. Confirmations were the most recurrent follow-up type, while elaborations occurred mainly during inferential conversations. Overall, teachers strongly determined the complexity of the conversation by means of their initiations. The study expands Anglo-American and European findings to the Latin American context, illustrating the commonality of read-alouds as early childhood education practice and underscoring that teachers can engage children from low socioeconomic backgrounds in cognitively challenging conversations.
Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)136-152
Aantal pagina's17
TijdschriftEuropean Early Childhood Education Research Journal
Nummer van het tijdschrift1
Vroegere onlinedatum16-feb.-2016
StatusPublished - 2017

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