Sharing Books: Examining How and Why Mothers Deviate from the Print
Reading Research and Instruction
The purposes of this study are threefold: (a) to examine mothers’ deviations from the printed text, (b) to examine mothers’ reasons for deviating from the print while sharing books with children, and (c) to examine both the text deviations and reasons mothers held for those deviations across a four‐year span of age groups. Grouped according to their children's ages (6‐months, 12‐months, 18‐months, 24‐months and 4‐years) 25 mothers read two preselected children's books during two scheduled reading times. Analyses showed that mothers in this study offered three major reasons for deviating from the printed text while reading with their children: (a) simplification: to make difficult text easier, (b) elaboration: to extend their children's knowledge, and (c) engagement: to maintain their children's attention during the book reading event. Mothers of the 24‐month and 4‐year‐olds asked more questions to engage their children, and they spent more time explaining text concepts. Mothers of the 6‐month, 12‐month, and 18‐month‐olds simplified text concepts and spent more time maintaining attention during book sharing. Mothers’ reasons to deviate from the text were highly related to their text deviations and were based in part upon their perceptions of their children's cognitive, linguistic, experiential, and affective development.
Martin, L. E., & Reutzel, D. R. (1999). Sharing Books: Examining How and Why Mothers Deviate from the Print. Reading Research and Instruction, 39 (1), 1999, pp. 39-70.