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Documenting Instructional Practices in a Literacy-Infused Arts Program

Respecting Pedagogues From the Community


  • Wanda Brooks,

  • Michael W. Smith


This study examines the instructional practices around literacy that characterized the work of a community based arts program designed for urban adolescents. Two primary sources of data were collected: field notes on approximately 35 hours of instruction spread across seven months and interviews with the program's staff and students. Four distinct instructional episodic structures were observed: explicit instruction, collaborative or individual construction that provided time for students to engage in creative literacy and artistic activity, serial performance in which teachers are on as equal a footing as possible as students, and scaffolded practice that is informed by a belief that all can succeed can foster deep engagement in literate activity.