Dialogic Reading in the Home Environment: A Multiple Case Study of Six Families




Irish, Christy K.

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The purpose of this multiple case study was to describe the experiences of six families of varying ethnicities and social classes being taught to use dialogic reading (DR) with their young children at home and to assess students’ vocabulary development. Using a Comprehensive Model of Emergent Literacy (Rhode, 2015) and an Ecological Model of Children’s Developmental Pathways (Weisner, 2002). Each case was analyzed and the family’s experiences contributed to the knowledge of how DR was implemented in the home. The families were taught to use DR using an instructional video and then observed over a six-week time frame. The preschoolers participating in the study were tested using the Expressive Vocabulary Test- 2 (EVT-2) (Williams, 2007) before and after the DR implementation. Data collection included interviews, direct observations, and video taping of dialogic reading in the home, field notes, and the EVT-2 (Williams, 2007). Data analysis consisted of initial and axial coding to form themes and the cases were compared using Stake’s (2006) multiple case analysis. This study found the families implemented DR to various degrees, while using some prompts more than others. The families experienced increased levels of interest, engagement, and bonding during shared readings. While there was little change in expressive vocabulary development, one preschooler’s scores increased using DR. Implications of this research include expanding the Comprehensive Emergent Literacy Model to include motivational factors, as well as the need for exploring further development in the use of recall prompts.



Reading instruction, Dialogic Reading, Emergent Literacy, Family literacy, Family Reading, Home Reading, Parental Engagement