National Writing Project

Book Review: Social Worlds of Children Learning to Write in an Urban Primary School, by Dyson

By: Rebekah Fassler
Publication: The Quarterly, Vol. 17, No. 2
Date: Spring 1995

Summary: Rebekah Fassler reviews Social Worlds of Children Learning to Write in an Urban Primary School, by Anne Haas Dyson, which presents case studies of six African-American children in a San Francisco Bay Area school. Over a two-year period, Dyson and her research assistants observed and audiotaped the African American focal children's interaction with peers and teachers during their daily composing time and during other classroom literacy events. Dyson analyzes the particular social purposes of the children's use of language and gives specific guidelines for teachers of minority children.

 

Excerpt

One of the most pervasive metaphors Dyson uses in this book is one of crossroads connecting the intersecting landscapes of the children's peer world, home world and official school world. She speaks of children drawing on the resources of their home and peer worlds to "nudge the official boundaries" of the conventional writing process curriculum. It would seem to this this reviewer that Dyson's entire book represents a crossroads linking the situated literacy experiences of her case study children with the more abstract world of theories about children's literacy development. In forging this crossroads, Dyson has herself "nudged the boundaries" of the official universe of discourse about literacy learning of minority children.

Download the Article

PDF Download "Social Worlds of Children Learning to Write in an Urban Primary School, by Dyson"

Related Resource Topics

© 2024 National Writing Project