Dialogic Reading (DR) is a form of interactive shared book reading which promotes children's active participation in reading. Previous studies have demonstrated that DR positively affects young children's literacy development. This small-scale study extends existing DR research to all-male dyads to examine whether DR has a greater impact on boys' literacy development than traditional styles of shared book reading. The sample comprised 18 boys between the ages of five and eight years and their adult male reading partners. Participants were randomly allocated to either the DR condition or regular shared reading (SR) condition. Adults were trained in the two approaches using a self-instruction training DVD. Children were pre- and post-tested on measures of receptive vocabulary, reading attainment and reading fluency. Intervention effects were assessed after six weeks by comparing the extent of pre- to post-test change in the DR and SR groups' standardised language scores. No statistically significant differences between the DR and SR groups were found. However, effect sizes indicated that experience of DR accounted for 15% of the variance in receptive vocabulary growth. Exposure to SR accounted for 13% growth in reading attainment and 12% change in reading fluency over the course of the intervention. The practical and theoretical implications of these findings are discussed in relation to further research evaluating the use of SR methods with all male dyads.
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- boys' underachievement
- reading fluency
- shared book reading