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Shared Reading

Page history last edited by amarkovich46@gmail.com 13 years, 1 month ago

Established & edited by Shawnyel Haywood, Annette Markovich, & Craig Stephens

Extended by Kelli Bippert, Kimberley Castaneda, & Idalia Nuñez



Shared Reading




Table of Contents:

Video of Shared Reading

1. Introduction of Panel Report and Abstract

     i. Programs

     ii. Settings

     iii. Child Characteristics

     iv. Findings and Reflections

2. From Panel to Practice

    i. Video Demonstration

     ii. Professional Resources

    iii. Additional Research

3. Conclusions

4. References





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The following link is an application of the NELP report in helping a young child learn literacy skills at home (can also be applied in the classroom):


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Chapter four of the National Early Literacy Panel (NELP) report, titled Shared Reading, reviews the impact of reading on complex language, vocabulary, and comprehension (NELP, 2008). The panel’s description of shared reading includes several methods of engaging students with text. Most of the methods focus on grammar and vocabulary development.  The objective of authors Schickedanz and McGee (2007) was to identify the development of comprehension in very young children. In addition they were convinced that the type of books, the way they were shared, and the level of the skill of the child all affect the shared reading outcome.  The NELP looked at studies of shared reading interventions which included parents, teachers, and or a combination of both types of involvement in the intervention.  The meta-analysis of the NELP reviewed studies on shared readings effects both on individuals and in group settings.  To be part of the meta-analysis a study had to use either a randomized control trial or quasi experimental .  The effectiveness of the intervention needed to measure conventional literacy skills; decoding, reading comprehension, spelling, and be published in a refereed journal.  After placing all of the studies through these requirements the NELP found nineteen to use in their meta-analysis on the effects of shared reading.  These nineteen studies focused on comparisons between a control group, which received their traditional amount of shared reading, and the experimental group which experienced increased shared reading or improved shared reading practices by either parents or teachers or a combination of both. 



Dependent Variable

Fixed Effect Size

Level of Effect

# of studies

Alphabetic Knowledge




Cognitive Ability




Oral Language




Phonological Awareness




Print Knowledge
















The NELP considered the dependent variables in the chart above.  The number of studies which measured each variable out of the 19 chosen is listed next to the fixed effect size (what is fixed effect size?).  The numbers of the meta-analysis point to a measurable impact on the oral language and print knowledge skills of young children who experience shared reading. 



i. Programs, Interventions, Instructional Approaches


Reach out and Read (ROR) is a program focused on providing parents with appropriate books and information regarding the impact of shared reading at home (ROR, 1989).  The NELP pointed out the large impact a specific study, focused on examining the program, had on their meta-analysis and how this impact might be misleading.  After removing the study there was still a significant impact found on children's learning after experiencing shared reading.   


The NELP also looked at the instructional approaches found in these nineteen studies.  The instructional approach reviewed by the NELP included dialogic reading and the agent of intervention; parent, teacher, combination of both, or computer (NELP, 2008).  Dialogic reading, where the facilitator asks the child to respond to the story or pictures in the book and provides feedback to those responses, did not provide any statistically significant increase in the child's or children's learning.  The agent of the intervention showed no reliable difference in a child's learning as well.  It should be noted that both of these variables did initially have large differences and it was only after the removal of the single study focused on Reach out and Read when the statistical differences shrank.     


ii.Environments and Settings


The NELP pointed out that the settings for many of the shared reading studies took place in different settings.  For studies concentrating on younger children the facilitator was often the parent and the environment the shared reading took place in the home.  This changed with older children as they entered Pre-K and kindergarten where most of the shared reading studies focused on the teacher and the classroom.  Unable to separate quantitatively these differences the NELP understood this limitation and recommended further research be done.  The NELP also understood that in the school environment the setting for shared reading is often a single parent or teacher reading to an entire class of children.  This was often the comparison, or fixed, condition in many of the research studies used and prevented the NELP from determining any effect this environment had on children's oral language and print knowledge skills (NELP, 2008). 


iii.Child Characteristics


The NELP also reviewed the results and looked for any statistically relevant differences in shared reading interventions impact on children of different ages and their risk status.  The meta-analysis showed no statistical difference between prekindergarten aged children and kindergarten aged children.  The results of the analysis regarding at risk children showed a statistically higher impact for children who are not at risk.  Regarding this finding the NELP points out the effect size of the studies were not statistically reliable and did not have confidence in the numbers.  A possible reason for this finding might be the impact of shared reading has on all children across different ethnicities, socioeconomic classes, and age groups (NELP, 2008).


iv. Findings and Reflections


Early on, the level of skills affects the outcome of shared reading. The global analysis showed some correlation between shared reading ability and oral language. Smaller effects were noted in the older kindergarten students than in preschool participants. This may be due to the growth of skill levels between preschool and kindergarten.  More gain was made in simple vocabulary compared to composite language; with gains made in both the younger versus the older group of students. This is a positive reflection on students making a connection with literacy devices. Teacher interaction through shared reading increases young children’s literary growth (Stephenson and Camarata, 2000).  After reviewing the report, it appears that the length and type of intervention resulted in a significant impact on the students learning in both early and late preschoolers.


The types of books used and methods of instruction do have an effect on the shared reading outcome. Different types of shared reading yielded different types of results, and it is recommended that combining different styles of shared reading results in a wider array of outcomes and increases comprehension, vocabulary, and print awareness. The text selection and the style of teaching does have an impact on the student response and thus impacts the extent to which the student becomes engaged with the book. Long lasting effects of shared reading can be reviewed in a survey of seventh graders (Allen, 2003). Students commented on stories they read while in the seventh grade that caused them to want to become readers. They had some favorite stories they recalled which helped them form positive attitudes toward reading. When teachers were reading relevant exciting materials the interest level of the students remained high.


Another success factor was linked to the expressive assessment that allowed elaborated responses.The shared reading panel (NELP; 2008) concluded that gains linked to this technique were made more in the expressive language, receptive vocabulary, and comprehension. All readers benefit from the shared reading, and the struggling readers get more support during the process (Allen, 2003). When individual readers work primarily one on one with their adult tester, students will pick up patterns of thinking and talking while they read the text. The combination of carefully planned adult intervention with both dialogic verses and dialogic groups is needed for students to get a wider scope on oral language development.  This supports Schickedanz' and McGee's (2007) theory that shared reading is impacted by the methods used to teach shared reading and the growth in the students reflect the skills they built on.


2. From Panel to Practice


In the following section, multiple resources have been compiled to demonstrate and support the use of shared reading in classrooms.


i. Shared Reading Video Demonstration


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Pauline Zeece (2006) suggests the following books to be used to develop and enhance phonemic awareness skills in young children. These literature-based resources will help early childhood professionals to assist in the development of phonemic awareness skills using developmentally appropriate texts.


Wordless/ Semi-Wordless Picture Books



     Alborough, Jez. (2006). Yes. Cambridge, MA: Candlewick Press.










     Burke, T. (2006). Fly, Little Bird. La Jolla, CA: Kane/ Miller Book Publishers.







     Consenting, R. (2006). The Marvelous Misadventures of Fun-Boy. New York: Penguin Young Readers Group. 







     Shannon, D. (2006). Good Boy, Fergus! New York: The Blue Sky Press/ Scholastic.








     Winter, J. (2006). Mama. Orlando, FL: Harcourt Books.








Rhymes and Wordplay Books




     Alexander, M. (2005). I'll Protect You from the Jungle Beasts. Watertown, MA: Charlesbridge.







     Hindley, J. (2006). Baby Talk. Cambridge, MA: Candlewick Press.








     Martin, B. (2006). "Fire! Fire!" Said Mrs. McGuire. San Diego, CA: Harcourt Children's Books.








     Ryder, J. (2006). Won't You Be My Hugaroo? San Diego, CA: Harcourt Children's Books.







     Wheeler, L. (2006). Sixteen Cows. Orlando, FL: Voyger Books/ Harcourt.













     Boynton, S. (2005). Dog Train: A Wide Ride n the Rock-and Roll Slide. New York: Workman Publishing.








     Downes, B. (2006). Baby Days: A Quilt of Rhymes and Pictures. Cambridge, MA: Candlewick Press. 









     Hoberman, M. A. (2006). The Llama Who Had No Pajama. San Diego, CA: Harcourt Children's Book Publisher.









     O'Hair, M. (2005). Star Baby. New York: Clarion Books.









     Yolen, J. (2005). This Little Piggy and Other Rhymes to Sing and Play. Cambridge, MA: Candlewick Press.






Many professionals also state that big books are the key to the shared reading experience. Here is a website link that will enable educators and parents to purchase big books that will enhance the shared reading experience, both at home and in the classroom.


This website also gives great tips and lessons for shared reading for teachers and parents.


ii. Professional Resources



Shared Reading for Today's Classroom is an in-depth guide to shared reading, written by a mentor teacher/staff developer. Classroom dialogues and lessons show how to model key skills and strategies and make the reading process visible for students-for both fiction and nonfiction. An essential resource to help students become confident, independent readers!  














Shared Reading with Big Books provides opportunities for teachers to expose emergent and fluent readers to books and print, and to teach reading skills and strategies to readers who are farther along in their literacy journeys. This book includes lessons for 50 big books (both fiction and nonfiction). Each lesson has before-, during-, and after-reading activities for two days or five days, as well as other books and activities designed to extend the big book.














Shared Storybook Reading is a practical guide that offers step-by-step instructions for early childhood professionals on how to use storybook reading time to introduce strategies for supporting early literacy skills in children from birth to age 5. This book offers strategies for effective adult-child interactions during storybook reading time with individual children and with small groups and uses scripts to help readers better understand the strategies. Most importantly, readers will learn skills necessary to solicit children's active involvement in the early childhood classroom.












Playing with Poems provides lessons that are carefully sequenced to lead students from beginning concepts to more complex ones. Special navigation charts help you match lessons to areas of need. It also provides great ideas for writing your own shared reading poems and for collecting them from outside sources.








Shared Reading Materials 


Here are a few examples of teaching aids you may find useful to facilitate a shared reading experience. These teaching aids as well as other similar teaching material can be retrieved from the following site: Mrs. Nelson's  Class



kwl chart.pdf 

story map.pdf  

iii. Additional Research


Effects of a cross-Linguistic Storybook Intervention on the Second Language Development of Two Preschool English Language Learners

Take away points:

The setting of this research study takes place in a public school head start program. The participants were both four year old English language learners.

There are positive connections between shared reading in a child’s home language and second language acquisition. The use of shared storybook reading at home can positively affect concepts of print and alphabet, vocabulary, and other print concepts.

(Huennekens, & Xu, 2010)


Mothers’ reading-related activities at home and learning to read during kindergarten .

Take away points:

A mothers’ teaching reading skills to a child is a later predictor of reading acquisition skills of kindergarten students. Students that begin kindergarten with appropriate reading skills improve the paternal teaching of reading a child gains. Girls, first born children, and children who have mothers who are highly educated have a greater chance of becoming good readers at the end of kindergarten.

(Silinskas, Parrila, Lerkkanen, Poikkeus, & Niemi, 2010)


Shared readings: Modeling Comprehension, Vocabulary, Text Structures, and Text Features for Older Readers

Take away points:

This study focused on behaviors veteran teachers used during shared reading lessons.

Text should be pre-selected and given a purpose. Teacher modeling and reinforcement should not overshadow the entire shared reading process.

(Fisher, Frey, & Lapp, 2008)


Variations in the Home Literacy Environment of Preschool Children: A cluster Analytic Approach

Take away points:

There is an association between socioeconomic status and types of home literacy activities. Although there were differences in activities between lowest and highest SES groups,  letter and sound activities were found more in low income households.

(Phillips, & Lonigan, 2009)


Preschool teachers’ literal and inferential question and children’s responses during whole-class shared reading

Take away points:

Informational narrative text appears to play an influential narrative text has a positive role in building teacher child conversations during shared readings. The level of teacher questioning affected the level of student responses.  The amount of questioning from the teacher did not affect vocabulary growth.

(Zucker, Justice, Piasta, & Kaderavek, 2010)


3. Conclusion


Further research is needed to understand the long term affect of the use of shared reading during preschool and kindergarten. As the student grows the reading skill becomes more complex and interconnected. A proper balance needs to be formed between the different components of reading. The balance reading can be compared to a balanced meal when comparing the shared reading to an appetizer. Then phonics and phonemic awareness, and code breaking are the soup and salad. While guided reading and individual reading becomes the entrée. Finally, the dessert comes when the child reads the story to someone else, acts it out as a play, or writes their own story. Higher and higher level of skills is required to develop oral language skills. In addition,  Schickedanz and McGee (2007) recommend more research in the area of listening comprehension, and the impact of discussing the pictures found in stories. Future, longitudinal studies on preschoolers through fourth grade may provide valuable information on the long term impact of the vocabulary, comprehension and language development that begins during a student’s preschool experience.


Schinkendanz and Magee (2007) added that  the focus of early pre-school shared should be geared toward building children's ability to analyze and think beyond the text and vocabulary.  Given the number of students who fail to read at grade level by first grade, listening comprehension skills which focus on such comprehension skills as making inferences, drawing conclusions, analyzing characters, and creating “what-if” scenarios should be another focus that teachers can key into in the preschool and kindergarten classroom.


Schinkendanz and Magee (2007) also agreed that more longitudinal studies need to be conducted which show the effects of shared reading on students well into third and fourth grades, so we can have a clearer picture of how these strategies help students in their later reading performance.  



 4. References


Allen, J., (2003) But They Still Can't (or Won't) Read! Helping Children Overcome roadblocks to Reading. Language Arts, 80(4), 268-270.


Fisher, D., Frey, N., & Lapp, D. (2008). Shared readings: modeling comprehension, vocabulary, text structures, and text features for older readers. The

     Reading Teacher, 61(7), 548-556.


Five, C., & Egawa, K., (1998). Reading and Writing Workshop What Is It, and What Does It Look Like?. School Talk 3(4), 1-8.


Huennekens, M., & Xu, Y. (2010). Effects of a cross-linguistic storybook intervention on the second language development of two preschool English

     language learners. Early Childhood Education Journal, 38(1), 19-26.


National early Literacy Panel. (2008). Developing early literacy: Report of the National Early Literacy Panel. Washington, DC: National Institute

     for Literacy.


Phillips, B., & Lonigan, C. (2009). Variations in the home literacy environment of preschool children:a cluster analytic approach. Scientific Studies of

     Reading, 13(2), 146-174.


Silinskas, G., Parrila, R., Lerkkanen, M., Poikkeus, A., Nurmi, j., & Niemi, P. (2010). Mothers' reading-related activities at home and learning to

     read during kindergarten. European Journal of Psychology of Education, 25(2), 243-264.


Schickedanz, J. & McGee, L. (2010). The NELP Report on Shared Reading Inventions (Chapter 4): Extending the Story. Educational

     Researcher, 39(4), 323-329.


Sumara, D., Davis, B., & Van Der Wey, D., (1998). The Pleasure of Thinking. Language Arts, 76(2), 135-143.



Tolentino, E. P. (2007). "Why do you like this page so much:" Exploring the potential of talk during preschool reading activities.Lanugage Arts, 84(6):519-528. 


Zeece, P. (2006). Sound Reading and Reading Sounds: The Case for Phonemic Awareness. Early Childhood Education Journal, 34 (2), 169-175.


Zucker, T., Justice, L., Piasta, S., & Kaderavek, J. (2010). Preschool teachers' literal and inferential questions and children's responses during

      whole-class shared reading. Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 25, 65-83.


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