This randomized-control trial examined the learning of preservice
teachers taking an initial Early Literacy course in an early childhood education
program and of the kindergarten or first grade students they tutored in their
field experience. Preservice teachers were randomly assigned to one of two
tutoring programs: Book Buddies and Tutor Assisted Intensive Learning Strategies
(TAILS), which provided identical meaning-focused instruction (shared book
reading), but differed in the presentation of code-focused skills. TAILS used
explicit, scripted lessons, and the Book Buddies required that code-focused
instruction take place during shared book reading. Our research goal was to
understand which tutoring program would be most effective in improving knowledge
about reading, lead to broad and deep language and preparedness of the novice
preservice teachers, and yield the most successful student reading outcomes.
Findings indicate that all pre-service teachers demonstrated similar gains in
knowledge, but preservice teachers in the TAILS program demonstrated broader and
deeper application of knowledge and higher self-ratings of preparedness to teach
reading. Students in both conditions made similar comprehension gains, but
students tutored with TAILS showed significantly stronger decoding gains.
From a sociocultural perspective, individuals learn best from contextualized experiences. In preservice teacher education, contextualized experiences include authentic literacy experiences, which include a real reader and writer and replicate real life communication. To be prepared to teach well, preservice teachers need to gain literacy content knowledge and possess reading maturity.
The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of authentic literacy experiences as Book Buddies with Hispanic fourth graders on preservice teachers’ literacy content knowledge and reading maturity.
The study was a pretest/posttest design conducted over 12 weeks. Preservice teacher participants, the focus of the study, were elementary education majors taking the third of four required reading courses in non-probabilistic convenience groups, 43 (n = 33 experimental, n = 10 comparison) Elementary Education majors. The Survey of Preservice Teachers’ Knowledge of Teaching and Technology (SPTKTT), specifically designed for preservice teachers majoring in elementary or early childhood education and the Reading Maturity Survey (RMS) were used in this study. Preservice teachers chose either the experimental or comparison group based on the opportunity to earn extra credit points (experimental = 30 points...