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An Analysis of the Moral Content of Children's Literature from 1600 to 1940

Description: It is the purpose of the present investigation to make an examination of the moral content of literature taught in the schools from 1600 to 1800, from 1800 to 1900, and from 1900 to 1940, and to draw conclusions as to the values of such literature. In the literature examined in this study, both the moral content and the methods used in presentation will be considered.
Date: 1942
Creator: Boyd, Grace
Partner: UNT Libraries

Victorian Ideology and British Children's Literature, 1870-1914

Description: In many nations, children's literature is a propaganda element for society. The structure of society, both real and imagined, and the composition of the immature mind make children's literature, both good and bad, a method by which to shape future citizens. Through studying the literature of a particular period and in one country, the relationship between children's literature and the history of the times and the ideals of the adults of that age is made clearer. Literature for the young is a record of the spirit of the times.
Date: August 1969
Creator: Trugman, Ann
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Evaluation of the Newbery Medal Books

Description: The writer's purpose in this study has been to make a thorough investigation of the Newbery Medal books to determine if they represent the best literature suitable for children's reading that has been published since 1922, and to investigate carefully the group as a whole to see if the books possess those rare qualities and characteristics which, deservedly, would set them apart from the ordinary type of books usually designated as suitable for children's reading.
Date: 1947
Creator: Lewis, Katherine
Partner: UNT Libraries

Parental Portrayals in Children's Literature: 1900-2000

Description: The portrayals of mothers and fathers in children's literature as companions, disciplinarians, caregivers, nurturers, and providers were documented in this research. The impact of time of publication, sex of author, award-winning status of book, best-selling status of book, race of characters, and sex of characters upon each of the five parental roles was assessed using descriptive statistics, cross-tabulation, and multinomial logistic regression techniques. A survey instrument developed for this study was completed for each of the 300 books randomly selected from the list of easy/picture books in the Children's Catalog (H.W. Wilson Company, 2001). To ensure all time periods were represented, the list was stratified by decades before sampling. It was expected that parental role portrayals would become more egalitarian and less traditional in each successive time period of publication. Male authors were expected to portray more egalitarian parental roles, and the race and sex of the young characters were not expected to influence parental portrayals. Award-winning books were expected to represent more egalitarian parental roles. Books that achieved the Publisher's Weekly all-time best-selling status were expected to portray parents in less egalitarian roles. Secondary analyses explored the prevalence of mothers' occupations, parental incompetence, and dangerous, solo child adventures. While the time of publication affected role portrayals, the evidence was unclear as to whether the changing roles represented greater egalitarianism. The race and the sex of the young characters significantly affected parental role portrayals, but the sex of the author did not influence these portrayals. While award winning and bestselling texts portrayed parents differently than books that did not achieve such honors, most did not provide enough information to adequately assess parenting roles. Half of the mothers who worked in the texts worked in conjunction with their husbands rather than independent of them. Over 10 % of mothers and fathers ...
Date: August 2005
Creator: DeWitt, Amy L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Effects of Visits by Authors of Children's Books in Selected Elementary Schools

Description: Guest author visits are popular events in schools across the United States. Little has been written, however, on a single author doing a single presentation in a school. This study addressed that situation. The study utilized two authors visiting four schools in a large North Central Texas school district.
Date: May 1987
Creator: Staas, Gretchen L. (Gretchen Lee)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Elementary Students' Critical Examination of Characters in Children's Literature Depicting Social Justice

Description: Despite the ruling of Brown vs. The Board of Education of Topeka, segregation in schools is still quite visible with suburban schools educating a student body of more than 70% White and urban schools comprised of mostly Black, Hispanic, and Asian students. Ideally, a school should dispel social and structural inequities through curriculum and quality resources, but fallibly, schools continue to be the vehicles to maintaining the status quo. Students who develop critical awareness and cultivate a critical literacy stance can become agents of change toward a more democratic society. In the current study, urban upper-elementary-age students were asked to engage in a critical literacy event by critically examining the power positions of characters in books that depict historical social injustice. The six female participants met in several sessions to read books and a newspaper article, use a critical reader response tool, and then engage in critical conversations about the books' characters. Their dialogue was recorded and analyzed using a critical discourse qualitative methodology. The findings show that older elementary students are capable of seeing multiple perspectives of an issue and can explain characters' power from born from privilege and fueled by fear and how a shift in power may occur through solidarity. The findings suggest school curriculum enhanced by media narrows the students' view of discrimination as being targeted mostly towards African-Americans, but those experiences through literature have the potential to expand the students' views to include other cultural groups. Subsequently, there is a need for broader teacher preparation using books that enhance students' views of social injustice.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Paiva, Deanne
Partner: UNT Libraries

Teachers' Use of Children's Literature, Mathematics Manipulatives, and Scaffolding to Improve Preschool Mathematics Achievement: Does It Work?

Description: The primary purpose of this study was to determine if the implementation of an intervention involving teachers' use of children's literature, related storybook manipulatives, and a scaffolding (LMS) approach to learning would improve preschool children's mathematics test scores. Additionally, the LMS approach was examined to determine whether teachers' perceptions of their effectiveness in mathematics instruction changed from the beginning to the end of the study. The subjects of the study included 60 preschool-aged children and six teachers from two child care centers. The preschool teachers participated in either a control or experimental condition (the LMS approach) in their daily mathematics instruction with their preschool children. The researcher tested the children using the Test of Early Mathematics Ability and an abbreviated version of the Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale. The study was based on two main research questions. The first question asked if there was a difference in the Test of Early Mathematics Ability total posttest scores between children in the literature-manipulatives-scaffolding intervention group and children in the control group after assuring equivalency of the two groups. The second question addressed if preschool teachers believed they were more effective in their mathematics instruction after implementing the LMS approach with young children. The answer to the first research question was that there was no statistically significant difference in the Test of Early Mathematics Ability total posttest scores between children in the literature-manipulatives-scaffolding group and children in the control group. However, the answer to the second question was that preschool teachers believed they were more effective in their mathematics instruction after implementing the LMS approach with young children. Recommendations for future research on early childhood mathematics include the investigation of preschool children's ability, achievement, and interest in mathematics; teachers' use of mathematics scaffolding techniques; and longitudinal mathematics interventions beginning during the preschool years.
Date: December 2000
Creator: Bennett, Tisha L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Use of Nonfiction/Informational Trade Books in an Elementary Classroom

Description: The purpose of the study was to describe the use of nonfiction/informational trade books within a literature-based elementary classroom by students and the teacher. Using a qualitative ethnographic approach, the researcher became a participant observer in a third grade classroom during a two and one-half week thematic unit about the westward movement. Data were collected from field notes, audiotapes of class discussions and informal interviews, documents of students' work, photographs, daily observer comment summaries, and memos. These data were coded, analyzed for recurring patterns, and grouped together, resulting in grounded theory.
Date: August 1994
Creator: Briggs, Connie Craft
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Analysis of the Social and Ethnic Attributes of the Characters in Children's Books Which Have Won Awards

Description: The problems under study were the following: 1. To determine the distribution of social and ethnic groups among the characters in books that have been awarded the Newbery and Caldecott Medals, and to analyze the treatment of certain groups. 2. To compare the ethnic distribution of characters in fifteen early Newbery Award books with the ethnic distribution of characters in fifteen recent Newbery Award books. 3. To interpret the findings of this study in the light of the objectives of the elementary school library.
Date: August 1967
Creator: Elkins, Hilda Arnold
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Wonderful World of Dr. Seuss: A Group Interpretation Script for the Primary Classroom

Description: This thesis proposed the idea of oral interpretation of children's literature as a pedagogical tool in the primary classroom. A group interpretation script entitled "The Wonderful World of Dr. Seuss" was compiled for performance in the primary classroom as a viable vehicle for teaching children to understand and appreciate literature. The script was evaluated by qualified teachers in the areas of English, oral interpretation, and elementary education as well as a critical analysis by the author. The thesis concluded that oral communication is necessary in the primary grade and that group interpretation is an exciting way to enhance learning.
Date: August 1985
Creator: Dodds, Karen Page Kalmbach
Partner: UNT Libraries

An Exploratory Study of Rural Values and Settings in Children's Picture Books

Description: The main problem of this research was to discover if children's picture books over the last fifty years have depicted rural values more significantly than urban values. One-hundred and one children's picture books were systematically chosen for analysis. This study takes an overall view of the history of children's literature. Also included is a review of the current studies and literature most germain to this study. Content analysis was used as the technique of data analysis, A descriptive analysis of the sample is also given. The study supports the main hypothesis that rural set, tings and rural values do occur more often than non-rural settings and urban values in children's picture books.
Date: August 1978
Creator: Holcombe, Karen E.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Victorian Ideology and British Children's Literature 1830-1914

Description: This dissertation shows the ideas of Victorian England, 1850-1914, as reflected in Victorian children's literature. To establish the validity of studying children's literature as a guide to the Victorian age, it was necessary first to show that children's literature in those years reflected and promoted adult ideals. Sources used include not only works by established authors but also children's periodicals and transient writings like "penny dreadfuls." There are four background chapters: an introduction, a brief social history, a history of publishing for children, and an examination of Victorian children's authors. Six chapters examine Victorian children's literature in relation to specific historical themes: class structure; the social problems of poverty; temperance; morality, manners, religion, and science; patriotism; and natives, slavery, and missionaries in relation to imperialism. Many findings support accepted historical theories. Attitudes on social class revealed definite class separations, mobility, and obligations. Stories on poverty and child labor show Victorian concern, but suggest few solutions other than charity. Literary items on religion and morality reflect a dominance of evangelical values. There was a morality separate from religion, and it was not threatened by the new developing science; indeed, the materials examined reveal how Victorians tried to reconcile the new science with theology. Religious obligations helped to promote and justify English nationalism and imperialism. Victorian children's literature also shows clearly that English imperialism existed before the late Victorian era, a finding which supports the Robinson and Gallagher thesis. In a survey of selected periodicals from 1861 to 1886, the number of items concerning imperialism followed a continuous growth pattern. Social Darwinism became an element of imperialism later in the Victorian age. Items on religion as distinct from morality declined in number. This survey also showed that the number of literary items about social problems remained almost constant, a demonstration of the ...
Date: December 1984
Creator: Ackerman, Ann Trugman
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Effects of Using Children's Literature with Adolescents in the English As a Foreign Language Classroom.

Description: This study provides quantitative and qualitative data about the effects of using children's literature with adolescents in a language classroom and the role of children's literature in students' second/foreign language development, including listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills. The study presents qualitative data about the role of children's literature in developing more positive attitudes toward reading in the second/foreign language and toward reading in general. With literature being a model of a culture, presenting linguistic benefits for language learners, teaching communication, and being a motivator in language learning, this study presents empirical data that show that inclusion of children's literature in adolescents' second/foreign language classroom promotes appreciation and enjoyment of literature, enhances the development of language skills, stimulates more advanced learning, and promotes students' personal growth.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Belsky, Stella
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Content Analysis of Children's Historical Fiction Written about World War II

Description: The purpose of this study was to investigate the evolution of children's historical fiction dealing with World War II in order to describe the changes that have occurred over the past 50 years. Two questions were asked in the study: (1) Has the characterization of protagonists portrayed in historical fiction about World War H evolved since 1943? and (2) Have the accounts of the events of World War H portrayed in historical fiction evolved since 1943? Content analysis was used as the method of collecting data. The sample consisted of 86 novels written from 1943 to 1993. Upon completing the reading and coding, the researcher discussed the categories and questions posed. As part of analysis, the discussion of the novels in each period was accompanied with an overview of trends in children's literature and events affecting society. The analysis led to the following conclusions: 1. Authors were impacted by changes in the social and political climate, as evidenced by the changes in the gender of the protagonists, an increase of violence, and the inclusion of women. 2. Novels written during the 1980s and 1990s were written with a stronger American perspective. 3. At the time that an increase of violence was seen in American society, descriptions of World War II events and protagonists' actions became more violent and more graphic. 4. Though the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki ended the war with Japan, an inadequacy still exists in the number of novels that provide readers with details related to the atomic bombs. Though much of World War II was fought in the Pacific Rim, a deficiency remains in the number of novels set in Pacific Rim countries. Recommendations for further research include performing a study that examines other genres, analyzing the changes observed in the portrayal of protagonists. A study ...
Date: August 1996
Creator: Crossland, R. Bert (Rodney Bert)
Partner: UNT Libraries

Identity Issues in Asian-American Children's and Adolescent Literature (1999-2007)

Description: Published research suggests that literature should transmit ethnic and societal values as well as reassure one's own confidence and self-respect. This study provides a model for examining Asian-American children's and adolescent literature critically from the perspective of identity issues. It examines fifteen award-winning Asian-American children's and adolescent titles written by writers of that culture and published in the United States from 1999 to 2007, with a focus on Chinese (Taiwanese) American, Korean American, and Japanese American books. As published studies indicate, self, social, and ethnic identities are significantly intertwined. Hence, a content analysis was conducted based on these three major groups of categories. The findings of the study demonstrate that even though the selected books cover all three aspects of the identity issues to a certain degree, a considerably greater number of depictions of ethnic identities are made over those of internal identities and social identities. Moreover, less than half of the main characters assume an active role in improving the difficult situation. Two major voids regarding the presentation of social identities are successful social integration and positive social interactions. Recommendations for teaching, writing, illustrating, publishing, and future research are suggested, including publishing more Asian-American books which present an optimistic outlook on life, active conflict-resolving behaviors, and a balance of gender among individuals with whom the main character interacts.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Liu, Yi-chen
Partner: UNT Libraries