Multidimensional literacy development: examining child behavior and teacher instruction Public Deposited

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  • March 22, 2019
  • Reynolds, Cathleen Carolyn
    • Affiliation: School of Education
  • Given the importance of federal legislation in combating educational inequities, particularly those in reading development, the identification of specific school-based variables that contribute to reading proficiency for struggling readers is paramount. While federal education policy, such as the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act of 2001 (2002) focuses primarily on direct instruction of specific literacy skills and characteristics of teacher quality, the literature does not show strong support for isolating these variables to improve children's reading skills in public schools. A growing body of literature has focused on the connection between child classroom behavioral engagement and reading achievement. This study utilizes data from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study - kindergarten class (ECLS-K) to examine of child behavioral engagement skills and teacher instruction in relation to children's literacy development in public elementary schools. Specifically, three research questions were examined using multivariate regression analyses. First, the contribution of child behavioral engagement skills to child literacy outcomes in third and fifth grades were examined above and beyond the contribution of their kindergarten literacy skills and participation in Reading First interventions. Second, the contribution of teacher's instructional choices on child literacy outcomes in third and fifth grades were examined above and beyond the contribution of teachers' Highly Qualified Teacher (HQT) status and children's participation in additional instruction time. Finally, within-year analyses examined individual and interaction effects of child behavioral engagement and teacher instructional choices on within-year child literacy scores. Support was found for the first hypothesis, but no support was found for the second hypothesis. Further, instructional time, teacher certification, and level of teacher education did not make any significant contribution to child reading scores. This research clarifies and extends current knowledge of constructs highlighted in NCLB and child classroom behavioral engagement. Findings of this research, in conjunction with future efforts, offer information for policymakers to develop evidence-based educational policies and improve the quality of public education for our children.
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  • In Copyright
  • Simeonsson, Rune
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Graduation year
  • 2014

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