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Language Arts, Vol. 75, No. 2, February 1998

Cover Art for Language Arts, Vol. 75, No. 2, February 1998

Table of Contents

Issue Theme: Puzzlements, Uncertainties, and Contradictions

  • Engagement, Conflict, and Avoidance in a Whole Language Classroom

    Stephen B. Kucer

    Abstract: Explores the different responses to a whole-language curriculum of two average third-grade students. Describes the teacher and the curriculum, and the contrasting literacy behaviors of the students. Discusses how this year-long observation challenged the author's beliefs about children's need for whole-language instruction.

    Keywords: Literacy, Pedagogy, Research, Elementary

  • One Afternoon in an Elysian Field: Socrates' Academy Adresses Spelling

    Brian Cambourne

    Abstract: Offers a fanciful dialog between Socrates and his followers to present findings about spelling development. Discusses the work of two scholars (Frank Smith and Steven Krashen); then discusses various hypotheses. Concludes that effective spellers get to be that way because they read as if they were writers; and a strong relationship exists between reading, writing, and spelling.

    Keywords: Research, Writing, Reading, Elementary

  • Examining Teacher Talk: Revealing Hidden Boundaries for Curricular Change

    Deborah Wells Rowe

    Abstract: Considers how curricular self-analysis of patterns of classroom talk provides teachers with an important opportunity to consciously consider the ways their talk works to define the nature of literacy events, students' roles, and the literacy strategies children come to use and value.

    Keywords: Assessment, Language, Pedagogy, Research, Elementary

  • Non-Narrative as a Catalyst for Literacy Development

    Linda J. Caswell and Nell K. Duke

    Abstract: Presents case studies of two struggling reader/writers who found a "way in" to the world of literacy through nonnarrative texts. Argues for greater attention to nonnarrative in early literacy education.

    Keywords: Literacy, Pedagogy, Research, Writing, Reading, Elementary

  • In Search of an Honest Response

    James Swaim

    Abstract: James Swaim, a teacher researcher working with third and fourth graders, looks over time at how his research has refined his views of the writing process and his role as a teacher.

    Keywords: Research, Writing

  • Finding "Real" Lives: Writing and Identity

    Linda Laidlaw

    Abstract: Puzzles over questions about writing and identity revealed in the author's kindergarten classroom. Focuses on the story of a child struggling to find her own way and her own place to examine the notion that writing, understood as a philosophical and artistic practice, might make a more explicit contribution to the process of "identity-making."

    Keywords: Pedagogy, Research, Writing, Elementary

  • Toward the Separation of School and State

    Sheridan Blau

    Abstract: Issues a call to action to teachers of the English/language arts. Discusses the current scene in the politics of education, the professional debate versus the political debate, collegial responsibility, and how to respond to current political outrages. Argues that the profession must lobby for the right of teachers to practice their profession without the interference of noneducators.

    Keywords: Elementary, School-Community Relation

  • Points of View in Children's Writing

    Colette Daiute

    Abstract: Argues that children's points of view shape knowledge in the classroom and are central to the development of children's writing and learning. Finds points of view by referring to examples of talk and writing; explains how cultural and personal factors come into play; and proposes that points of view become an explicit aspect of instruction, especially in multicultural settings.

    Keywords: Writing, Elementary

  • Patricia Polacco

    Carol Gilles with Patrick Allen, Jean Dickinson and Jenine Loesing

    Abstract: Highlights the work of author/illustrator Patricia Polacco. Discusses her picture books in terms of themes, including family stories; "passed down" stories featuring a babushka; stories that emphasize diverse communities; stories that contain magic or a miracle; and stories that help to raise social consciousness.

    Keywords: Literature, Elementary

  • Editors’ Pages

    Abstract: Available in print version only.

    Keywords: Elementary

* Journal articles are provided in PDF format and can be opened using the free Adobe® Reader® program or a comparable viewer. Click here to download and install the most recent version of Adobe Reader.

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A Professional Association of Educators in English Studies, Literacy, and Language Arts