Date of Award

2010

Degree Name

Curriculum and Instruction

College

Graduate School of Education and Professional Development

Type of Degree

Ed.D.

Document Type

Dissertation

First Advisor

Samuel Securro

Second Advisor

Paige Carney

Third Advisor

Michael Sullivan

Abstract

This study investigated the perceived frequency of implementation of language and literacy practices for 217 West Virginia Pre-K teachers. Teachers were employed in public school-based and community-based classrooms for 4-year-olds. Respondents completed the Language and Literacy Practice Survey (LLPS), which measured their perceived frequency of implementation of 18 language and literacy practices. Their overall perceived ability level for implementing effective language and literacy instruction was also assessed. Respondents also rated their use of resources and materials to facilitate effective language and literacy instruction. Additionally, respondents answered open-ended qualitative questions to determine perceived constraints that may hinder their effective implementation of language and literacy practices and to identify areas of additional support or professional development needed to enhance their ability to implement quality language and literacy instruction. Data were distinguished by three variables: preschool teaching experience, degree level and professional development clock hours completed. Results indicated that West Virginia Pre-K teachers perceived their overall ability to implement effective language and literacy instruction as Competent or Optimal. Likewise, their perceived frequency of implementation of the majority of associated language and literacy practices is Almost Always. Furthermore, their use of resources and materials corresponds with their perceived frequency of implementation. Practices associated with book selection and read-aloud activities were perceived to be implemented the most frequently of all 18 practices; whereas practices associated with writing and print awareness were perceived to have been the least effectively implemented. Moreover, the most significant indicator of perceived frequency of language and literacy implementation was the number of professional development clock hours completed. The qualitative data indicated that, of the constraints reported by West Virginia Pre-K teachers, the current curriculum (Creative Curriculum) and the lack of time were the most prominent. In addition, teachers indicated the strongest need for support or professional development in reading and writing practices, general language and literacy practices and early childhood best practices. The conclusions are that, overall, WV Pre-K teachers perceived themselves as implementing language and literacy instructional practices frequently and optimally and that they desire more professional development opportunities to improve the quality of their language and literacy practices.

Subject(s)

Preschool teachers - West Virginia.

Preschool teaching - West Virginia.