Handbook of Writing Research

By Charles A. MacArthur; Steve Graham et al. | Go to book overview

Chapter 9
Children's Understanding of Genre
and Writing Development

Carol A. Donovan and Laura B. Smolkin

Children, like adults, write for a range of purposes (Bissex, 1980; Chapman, 1994, 1995; Dyson, 1999; Graves, 1975; Newkirk, 1987, 1989; Zecker, 1999). An important part of "doing school" is mastering the most frequently appearing generic forms (Cope & Kalantzis, 1993; Martin, 1989; Martin & Rothery, 1986). In children's everyday lives in schools, two genres receive the most attention: stories and informational texts (Kress, 1982, but see Dixon, 1987, for a different view). Stories expand from the folktale prominent in the preschool set to high fantasy and science fiction for gifted upper elementary students. Informational texts expand from concept books to picture information books, to science and social studies textbooks (with the occasional enlightened teacher using authentic materials and magazine articles).

In this chapter we have attempted to provide a comprehensive review of the literature on children's understandings of genre as related to Writing development. We believe genre knowledge develops prior to conventional Writing abilities and include studies of children's pretend readings, dictations, and oral readings of early Writing attempts to provide the broadest description of children's genre knowledge and Writing development. We begin by examining the theoretical models framing research in this area, and continue with the methodologies employed for collecting and analyzing data. We move next to the general questions that have been asked, then to the major findings to date in this emergent field of research. Finally, we consider implications for instruction and the important research still needed.


Theoretical Frameworks and Reviews of Relevant Research Used to investigate Children's Genre Knowledge

Theoretical frameworks in studies of children's genre knowledge and Writing development appear to be influenced by three major traditions. The rhetorical tradition examines the structure of language with intent to provide descriptive models. The social tradition acknowledges a shared structure of language, repeatedly pointing to the fact that language is never a solitary pursuit. The cognitive-psychological tradition centers itself in examinations of practical experiences to learn how individuals and/or groups make sense of their various language encounters. Generally, studies from this third tradition ground themselves not in a theoretical frame but in the review of related research. We have organized our review of framing sections by the tradition invoked, and present the major figures of the tradition cited by researchers of genre knowledge development.

-131-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Handbook of Writing Research
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 468

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.