Dimensions of Literacy: A Conceptual Base for Teaching Reading and Writing in School Settings

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L. Erlbaum Associates, 2001 - Education - 304 pages
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This landmark text significantly expands our understanding of literacy by examining it from a multidimensional and interdisciplinary perspective. It "unpackages" the various dimensions of literacy--linguistic, cognitive, sociocultural, and developmental--and at the same time accounts for the interrelationships among them. The ultimate goal is to provide a conceptual foundation upon which literacy curriculum and instruction in school settings can be grounded.

Dimensions of Literacy:
*links theory and research to practice in an understandable, user-friendly manner--within each chapter and in the final chapter focused exclusively on instructional implications.
*provides in-depth coverage of the various dimensions of literacy: linguistic (the nature of language, oral-written language relationships, language variation); cognitive (constructive nature of perception, reading and comprehending processes, writing process); sociocultural (literacy as social practices, authority of written discourse), and developmental (constructing the written language system).
*includes numerous demonstrations, "hands-on" activities, and authentic reading and writing events that reflect key linguistic, cognitive, sociocultural, and developmental concepts, as well as many tables and figures that summarize the concepts in a clear, accessible form.

Educational institutions, and teachers in particular, are currently under intense scrutiny, as the standards movement and high-stakes testing increasingly determine what is taught, when it is taught, and how it is taught. If literacy teachers are to have a voice in these policies, it is critical that they have an understanding of what literacy entails. Because they work with students' reading and writing on a daily basis, teachers have an intuitive sense of the complexities of the literacy processes. The intent of Dimensions of Literacyis to make this teacher knowledge explicit, as well as to more fully develop it. It is essential reading for all teachers and students in the field of literacy education.

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