Date of Award

6-21-2018

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EDD)

Degree Program

Educational Leadership - with a Specialization in K-12 Leadership

Department

College of Education

First Advisor

Kelly Burlison

Second Advisor

Phyllis Superfisky

Third Advisor

Suzanne King

Abstract

Literacy is necessary for all students to be successful in all subject areas. The foundations of literacy are constructed in prekindergarten, kindergarten, first, and second grades (Slavin, 2005). Phonics deficiency is often a problem for emergent and struggling readers, and some phonics researchers believe that traditional approaches to phonics may not be effective, especially for readers who face challenges (Earle & Sayeski, 2016).

After an extensive literature review, the researcher found there have been no studies conducted on teachers’ perceptions of the effectiveness of creative movement on phonics acquisition. Because phonics is also limited in the reading curriculum, and tends to be dull and worksheet-driven, the researcher of this qualitative study collected and analyzed the perceptions of prekindergarten through second grade teachers on the effectiveness of creative movement on phonics acquisition. Second, the data was analyzed to determine if there was a relationship between the grade level taught (e.g. prekindergarten, kindergarten, first, or second grade) and the perception of creative movement effectiveness. Survey data was collected from prekindergarten through second grade teachers in private schools throughout South Florida. The researcher selected educators through random sampling who teach any subject area to prekindergarten through second grade students. Prekindergarten were the only grade level of respondents who displayed all favorable responses to both Likert scale survey questions and the open-ended question (e.g. 10) inquiring about teachers’ perceptions of the effectiveness of creative movement on phonics acquisition. First grade teacher respondents displayed some similarities to the responses of prekindergarten, especially in survey questions six (e.g. effectiveness of worksheet-driven approaches to phonics acquisition), seven (e.g. creative movement effectiveness at engaging students during phonics instruction), and eight (e.g. creative movement effectiveness in phonics acquisition; Table 2). Overall as the grade levels increased to kindergarten, first, and second grade, the responses became more varied (e.g. a combination of favorable, neutral, and unfavorable). All grade levels expressed favorable responses (e.g. 18 respondents-94.75%) to the open-ended survey question 10 (Table 1). In this question (including Likert scale questions), prekindergarten was the only grade level whose responses were categorized into only two favorable themes. Kindergarten and first grade teacher respondents displayed favorable responses categorized into three to four themes for survey question 10. Second grade was the only grade level to have a respondent express an unfavorable response (e.g. one respondent or 5.26%) to the 10th survey question regarding the perceptions of creative movement effectiveness on phonics acquisition (Table 1). Overall, the researcher learned that an average of 8.88% of respondents expressed unfavorable perceptions while an average of 6.38% expressed neutral responses, and an average of 84.74% of participants from the sample provided favorable perceptions on survey questions seven through 10, the specific questions inquiring about the effectiveness of creative movement in fostering engagement, understanding, and learning in phonics acquisition for students in prekindergarten through second grade.

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