The influence of video on reader response: incorporating mulitmedia with literacy instruction

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Ward, Tamara Jean

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Recent research has explored the effects on literacy of using multimedia presentations that actively integrate text and visuals; however, the potential effect of media use on reader response is largely unexplored. Due to expanding use of multimedia, it is important to understand how video can best be incorporated into literacy teaching. The purpose of this study was to investigate how a video version of a book influences students’ oral and written response to a story by being administered either before, in the middle, or after a teacher reads the book aloud. The participants for this study included students and teachers from three fourth- grade classrooms in a single school. Fifty students from generally low-income families participated by (1) completing two surveys about their reading and video viewing preferences, (2) completing an attitude survey following each of the three treatments (before, middle, after), and (3) keeping a response journal for each book and video. The three teachers were interviewed twice, once following the first treatment and again at the study’s completion. Using both quantitative and qualitative methods allowed statistical analysis of data pertaining to the qualitative nature of student journal responses while concurrently investigating students’ and teachers’ perspectives on the comparative value of video use before, in the middle, or after a teacher reads a book aloud. The findings from pre/post surveys and post treatment attitude measures clearly suggest that the students preferred to see the videos before they heard the books. They felt that viewing videos beforehand helped them to better understand the stories. The findings from the response journal analysis suggest that reading/viewing sequence does not make a difference in terms of either the quantity or quality of journal responses. All three teachers thought the videos and response journals enhanced the literacy instruction of the books, and all perceived that the videos’ visual representations of the books helped students to better understand the stories.




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