• Students' and a teacher's views of factors contributing to positive literacy learning identities for all students in an inclusive classroom.

      Wearmouth, Janice (Routledge, 2019-03-31)
      The location of the research study was Aotearoa, New Zealand. It was carried out in the classroom of a primary teacher formally identified by a national body as being an excellent practitioner in supporting young people’s literacy acquisition. The aim of this study was to examine students’ identities as literacy learners within the context of her pedagogy and the learning environment of her classroom. In particular the intention was to compare high and low literacy achievers’ identities as writers and to identify whether any lessons might be learnt from this comparison about ways in which the overall level of literacy achievement among low achievers might be raised. The study was conceptualised within a socio-cultural understanding of learning and located in a classroom of diverse learners where all were constructively engaged with writing and held a positive sense of themselves as developing writers. Writing in the classroom focused on authenticity and the communicative aspects of the whole text rather than discrete elements of the mechanics. At the same time, however, spelling and grammar were not ignored but were attended too systematically as the need arose for individual students. Overwhelmingly the impression conveyed by the voices of the teacher and her students was one of positivity, energy, achievement and real sense of focus by everyone, high and low attainers alike. Positive student writing identities were developing in a classroom where the teacher had a very high degree of subject and pedagogical content knowledge, and where her whole approach to supporting writing acquisition of her students was determined rather than random, had an immediacy of its responsiveness in relation to every student’s learning and, above all, had a recognition of the importance of positive relationships, teacher to student and peer to peer, in a safe learning environment.