UBC Theses and Dissertations
Growth patterns in reading achievement Andrade, Teresa Manalad
The Problem The purposes of this study were (1) to investigate and analyze patterns of growth in reading achievement from grade three through grade seven of children with different initial status of reading readiness and (2) to find out what early childhood characteristics distinguished those who have become good and poor readers in grade five. Methods and Procedures The first investigation was a retrospective, longitudinal study of the patterns of the means in Word Meaning and Paragraph Meaning of the Stanford Achievement Test. The subjects were 300 seventh graders who had available scores on the Metropolitan Readiness Tests in grade one and on the Stanford Achievement Test in grades three through seven. These pupils were randomly selected from a population of 517 children from 14 elementary schools. Analysis of variance, t tests and graphs were employed in comparing the growth patterns exhibited by pupils in the superior, high normal, average, low normal, and poor risk categories of reading readiness. The second part was an ex post facto study in which the Fisher exact probability test was used in identifying certain preschool and beginning school characteristics that differentiated the good from the poor grade five readers. Case studies were made on sixteen good readers and sixteen poor readers randomly selected from the top 27 per cent and the bottom 27 per cent of a population of 315 grade five pupils from five elementary schools. Information was obtained from the scores on the Metropolitan Readiness Tests, permanent school records, and interviews with parents. Conclusions 1. The three highest groups of readiness categories, the superior, high normal, and average maintained their relative positions throughout the entire five-year period. This trend indicated that pupils with high initial status of reading readiness continue to perform well in reading throughout the elementary grades. 2. Those in the superior group remained superior, on the average, and even tended to progress at a faster rate than those in the other categories of reading readiness. 3. The slopes of the curves on Paragraph Meaning of the average and the low normal groups and on Word Meaning of the low normal and the poor risk groups tended to be similar. 4. There appeared to be no plateau in grade four in the growth curves of all levels of reading readiness but something like a plateau was noted from grades five to six. 5. There was a steep rise in growth in reading in grade seven for all the five categories of reading readiness. 6. The mean gains from grade three through grade seven were significantly different for all the reading readiness groups. 7. In general, the boys surpassed the girls at all grade levels. The differences, however, were found to be significant in most grades only for the high normal category on Paragraph Meaning and for the high normal and low normal categories on Word Meaning. 8. The characteristics in preschool and early school years that were found to differentiate between the good and the poor readers in the fifth grade were (a) reading readiness category, (b) eagerness to do things by himself, (c) curiosity, (d) interest in reading, (e) congenial relationship with parents, (f) self-confidence, (g) was read to and given help in reading, (h) visual perception, (i) auditory perception, (j) richness of verbal concepts, (k) vocabulary, and (l) number knowledge.
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