Thesis Title

The Advantages and Disadvantages of an Early Bird/Late Bird Program

Graduation Date

Spring 2002

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Document Form

Print

Degree Name

Master of Science

Program Name

Education

Program Director

Madalienne F. Peters, EdD

Abstract

This project examined the advantages and disadvantages of an elementary school districts Early Bird / Late Bird Reading Program. The reading program allows for a reduced number of students for two hours of the school day, which is designated for teaching reading. The literature review states that, as the number of students-to-teacher ratio drops, the students’ and teachers’ morale, environment, and student academic achievement improves.

A team of seven elementary school teachers, a reading specialist, and five district administrators were interviewed. Questions were semi-structured in nature, and asked both educators and administrators to comment on the advantages and disadvantages of the reading program. Consistent with the literature review, data-analysis revealed that there are many benefits of teaching reading when the student-to-teacher ratio is reduced to a number lower than 20. Major findings included a better learning environment, better student/teacher report, many academic benefits, and higher student performances. Through re-examination of the data, it is apparent that the Early Bird / Late Bird Reading Program has many advantages. With further investigation, it was also found that the program has one major disadvantage. While the program leads to a great reading program, it also leads to loss of instruction time in other curricular areas. In conclusion, the advantages of the reading program outweigh the disadvantages of this Early Bird / Late Bird Reading Program.

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