Preschool children in book-reading situations with parents: the perspective of personal agency theory

Author: Gavora, Peter
Source document: Studia paedagogica. 2016, vol. 21, iss. 4, pp. 99-116
  • ISSN
    1803-7437 (print)
    2336-4521 (online)
License: Not specified license
This study reports on how parents view their child's contributions to home reading situations. The core of the study concerns characteristics of home reading sessions as routine institutional practices of the family in which parent–child book-reading processes are conducted. The sample consisted of 21 parents who were individually interviewed about their home reading with their preschool age children. The data show that in interactions over textual materials parents and children employ a range of behaviours which, on the child's part, have agentic qualities. Within the data, six fundamental strategies employed by the children were identified: book selection, monitoring reading, commenting, questioning, expanding, and reading-time negotiation. All of these show that children can initiate and perform purposeful actions in order to achieve goals that they value. This testifies to the possession of agency on the part of the child.
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