pISSN : 1976-1961

Rethinking Story Reading in U.S. Preschools: Making Story Comprehension and Social-Emotional Understanding the Priority

AUTHOR : Judith A. Schickedanz

INFORMATION : page. 5~25 / 2014 Vol.8 No.2


This paper begins with a brief historical overview that provides a context for understanding approaches to story reading in U.S. preschools. It also discusses factors that have prompted a new trend in story reading, one emphasizing story comprehension directly, not as a vehicle for developing only oral vocabulary and print-related literacy skills. This backdrop, as well as discussions of new research and achievement difficulties in school-age children, sets the stage for the author’s suggestion that preschoolers’ social-emotional understanding would also likely benefit, if story reading goals and strategies were changed to focus on higher-level story comprehension. Examples of suitable storybooks and comprehension support strategies are used to illustrate how the complementary goals of supporting story comprehension and social-emotional learning might be addressed. These examples also suggest a research intervention needed to determine whether story comprehension support strategies can also benefit social-emotional understanding.

Keyword :

story comprehension,social-emotional understanding,inferential thinking,story reading strategies

U.S. Preschool Read-Aloud Practices: A Bit of History

Story Reading during the First Half of the 20th Century

Questioning the Nature of IQ in the 1960s and the First Early Language Interventions

Preschool Story Reading Practices From 1980 through the Late 2000s

Reading To Support Story Comprehension and Social-Emotional Understanding

“Hooray for Harry” (by Kim Lewis, 2006)

“Dreams” (by E.J. Keats, 1974)

“Peter’s Chair” (by E.J. Keats, 1967)

Summary of Story Reading To Support the Development of Empathy


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