Literature circles in the high school setting: an inquiry from comprehension to synthesis
The purpose of this study is to determine the efficacy of literature circles in a high school English classroom setting. Specifically, the purpose of this is to determine if literature circles improve reading comprehension and student involvement in reading and class discussions. As a sub-inquiry of this study, it is the purpose of this researcher to determine if the prescribed roles often used as guidelines for literature circles create perfunctory responses in small group discussions, and if incorporating aspects of comprehension strategies improves the content of discussions as well as student reading comprehension. Literature circles used in the process of this study examined both fictional material and nonfiction material. This aspect of the study discusses the differences in instructional strategies and efficacy of literature circles between the genres. The participants involved in this study were high school seniors from four different classrooms. The classes were heterogeneously composed of high, medium and low level reading abilities, as indicated on previous tests, including the Kansas State Reading Assessment given during their junior year of study. In addition to reading abilities, motivational levels were assessed through an initial survey. Two classes were assigned as the control group--receiving instruction using primarily direct instructional practices--and two classes were assigned as the experimental group--receiving instruction through literature circles and small group discussions. The two groups, though the instructional strategies varied, covered the same material. Both groups had the same learning objectives and were assessed using the same tools.
Thesis (M.Ed.)--Wichita State University, College of Education, Dept. of Curriculum and Instruction.
Includes bibliographic references (leaves 85-89)