Capstone/Dissertation Title

Strategies to Increase Background Knowledge in a Secondary Language Arts Classroom

Term

Fall 12-14-2015

Capstone

Thesis

Degree Name

MAT

Primary Advisor/Dissertation Chair

Marcia Rockwood

Secondary Advisor/Reader One

Holly Clark

Peer-Reviewer/Reader Two

Carol Mayer

Abstract

The research question addressed in this project was: How can a middle school language arts teacher effectively increase background knowledge of students affected by the achievement gap? This capstone highlights the historical context of the achievement gap and the status of literacy education today. Based on both literacy research and teacher interviews, the author designed a unit plan to increase students’ background knowledge through the use of the read aloud. Even though this unit plan focused primarily on the read aloud, the author concluded that any instructional strategy used to increase background information would be helpful to middle school learners, especially those affected by the achievement gap.

Research Methodology

Curriculum Development, Interview

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