Multiple Paths to Literacy: Classroom Techniques for Struggling Readers, K-12 (5th Edition)

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9780130308993: Multiple Paths to Literacy: Classroom Techniques for Struggling Readers, K-12 (5th Edition)

Full of practical ideas and strategies, this book provides a comprehensive and balanced approach to diagnose, assess, and support the literacy development of struggling readers and second language learners. Unique to this book is a philosophical approach that links all literacy domains with the eight recognized multiple intelligences. This serves as a springboard for identifying appropriate instructional strategies to meet individual student needs.

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I would like to begin this preface by saying that this text, in particular this fifth edition, embodies a profound respect for teachers as knowledgeable, thinking professionals. I feel there is a need for such a statement when state legislatures around the country are mandating curriculum and program "police" are monitoring classrooms to ensure that teachers be technicians of a particular program rather than be trusted to teach as the professional educators that they are. Teaching is very hard work. It requires a view of oneself as a lifelong learner. Teachers also view themselves as researchers, constantly questioning their methods and trying new ideas that might help them to meet the needs of all the students entrusted to them.

Just as classroom teachers are continually developing as professionals, so am I, as the author of this text. Between editions I regularly read professional literature, attend conferences, work with students of all ages, and discuss ideas with colleagues for the express purpose of identifying the methods and theories related to literacy assessment and instruction that represent the best of what is known in the field of literacy education. Therefore, as I have done for prior editions, I offer, in this edition, information based on the most current research in the field and the best thinking of literacy experts representative of a variety of viewpoints to present a balanced look at what we educators can do to help all learners achieve literacy. A continuing goal is also to provide teacher education students, classroom teachers, and reading teachers with a guide and a resource for meeting the needs of readers experiencing difficulty, including second-language learners, found in most classrooms throughout the United States. The use of quality children's literature as a starting point for literacy instruction remains a major focus.

This edition also strongly supports a view of literacy development that includes multiple forms of literacy. From text-based forms to technology-related literacy to visual literacy and the performing arts, incorporating a variety of forms is essential to meeting the needs of learners in today's world. The conceptual framework that best illuminates this view is Gardner's (1983, 1999) multiple intelligences (MI) theory, which is greatly expanded upon in this edition.

In addition, a conscious effort has been made to present techniques appropriate to, or easily modified for, any grade level from primary through secondary school. Students can experience difficulty at any point in their literacy development. Difficulty is often first noticed when students are asked to read material such as expository text that requires strategic reading behaviors different from those for reading narrative text.

WHAT IS NEW IN THIS EDITION?

  • Expanded coverage of Gardner's multiple intelligences theory throughout the text. Included are margin notes that make explicit connections between a particular strategy and the specific intelligence it represents as an entry to literacy development.
  • Expanded coverage of literacy development for second-language learners (SLL), including a major revision and earlier placement in the text of a foundational chapter on language diversity, and highlighting within chapter boxes particularly effective SLL strategies for each domain chapter.
  • A new chapter on integrating the arts and literacy instruction. This chapter contains actual examples that describe specific activities for linking literacy with the visual arts, drama, music, and dance.
  • A more logical arrangement and increased coverage of comprehension topics. There is now a separate chapter on meaning vocabulary, with chapters on general comprehension strategies, strategic reading for both narrative and expository material, and study skills, for a total of five chapters that deal specifically with comprehension issues.
  • More integration of technology throughout the text with updated websites throughout as well as within an extensive appendix. There is also a Companion Website for the fifth edition offering opportunities for self-assessment, special information for teachers, and assistance for instructors, such as a Syllabus Manager.
  • Expanded treatment of phonemic awareness and spelling instruction.
  • Updates throughout the text for lessons, websites, suggested readings, and multiethnic children's literature.

HOW IS THIS EDITION ORGANIZED?

This edition continues to provide teachers with an analytic approach and techniques for (1) recognizing readers with difficulties, (2) identifying readers' specific strengths and needs, and (3) planning instruction that takes into account the special talents and multiple intelligences of their students.

The new edition maintains the two major sections: Part I, "Foundations," and Part II, "The Major Domains." Part I reviews the fundamentals of the reading process and introduces the nature of corrective reading; describes analytic teaching and the analytic process; presents foundations of language diversity; discusses reading-related factors such as physical, psychological, and environmental correlates; and describes ways to assess and evaluate literacy performance. Part II provides specific information on instructional techniques for the major literacy domains of oral and written language, word recognition, reading comprehension, meaning vocabulary, strategic reading for narrative text, strategic reading for expository text, and study skills, as well as for the special topic of integrating literacy instruction and the arts. The extensive coverage of instructional techniques for all literacy domains and for all grade levels is a strength of this text.

The chapters in Part I are best studied in the order presented, while the chapters in Part II are independent of one another and can be studied in any order. The text organization corresponds especially well to a course organization that includes a field experience or a practicum or clinic experience. While the basis of the text is supported by reasearch and theory, the overall flavor of the text remains more applied and practical than theoretical.

SPECIAL FEATURES

Certain format features aid learning from the text. Each chapter begins with a list of learning objectives, important vocabulary words, and an extended study outline. The terms listed as important vocabulary for each chapter are also boldfaced within the text for quick location. An annotated list of suggested readings at the end of each chapter helps the reader gain further understanding of the concepts discussed. These features aid the reader in preparing to read each chapter and in studying the material and aid the instructor in anticipating topics that may need additional explanation or hands-on experience. Within each domain chapter, margin notes make explicit connections between strategies and the multiple intelligences. Also within each domain chapter is an SLL box that highlights a particularly effective strategy for second-language learners.

The appendixes provide specific aids for readers and include materials for: communicating student progress to parents, locating relevant Internet sites, reviewing national Standards for the English Language Arts, identifying appropriate multiethnic children's literature, determining readability of written material, assessing instructional environments, reviewing the steps in the analytic process, examining readers' attitudes toward reading and self-concept, determining spelling development, analyzing writing samples, viewing creative books by young learners, and reviewing phonics generalizations. A glossary is also available for quick reference to a term's meaning. Finally, supplementary material is available; a Companion Website supports this book. The URL is http://www.prenhall.com/gipe

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

Thanks to colleagues and students across the country, and to the staff at Prentice Hall, this text is now in its fifth edition. While its primary focus on the analytic process and the view that there are many ways to help a learner achieve literacy has not changed, this edition contains an expanded treatment of multiple intelligences theory, more ideas for second-language learners, and an even greater number of instructional techniques appropriate for, or easily modified for, older students. Suggestions for instruction continue to focus on the use of whole text through children's literature and include writing, and now the arts, whenever possible. In addition, teachers are encouraged and helped throughout the text, to accommodate their students' many and varied natural talents.

The feedback from my own students and from other instructors and students who used the previous editions provided the impetus for the changes in this edition. I sincerely thank all who offered suggestions for this new edition. Special thanks to Cherie Clodfelter, University of Dallas; Margaret M. Dermody, Loyola University; Mary Ann Dzama, George Mason University; Sandra Lettrich, Seton Hill College; and Julie Roth, California State University-Chico, for their thorough and thoughtful readings and reviews of the fifth edition. I hope all of you will find this edition even more appealing and helpful than the previous ones.

Joan P. Gipe

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