Community Literate and Numerate Practices: Making the Connections to School

Dr. Jennifer Rennie
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This paper reports on a qualitative study, which investigated the transition experiences of seven Torres Strait Islander children as they moved from their community primary school to their urban high school. The study highlighted the continuities and discontinuities between the literacy and numeracy practices of the community, community primary school and urban high school.

Detailed case study information was generated through observations, document analysis and interviews. Data analysis involved three distinct phases. In the first phase coding of the data sets occurred (Miles and Huberman, 1994). The second phase involved an ethnographically grounded approach to discourse analysis (Gee and Green, 1997). Finally constant comparative analysis of the data occurred to identify continuities an discontinuities between the data (Guba and Lincoln, 2000).

A number of continuities were identified between the different literate and numerate practices that children engaged with both in and outside of school. Discontinuities were found in the ways in which children engaged in the various activities. Further, the data highlighted a lack of understanding, valuing and acknowledgement of these community practices by schools. This paper explores some of the implications of the findings of this study in relation to curriculum and pedagogy.

Keywords: Literate and Numerate Practices, School Based Practices, Curriculum and Pedagogy, Transitions from Primary to High School
Stream: Community, Culture, Globalisation
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Community Literate and Numerate Practices

Dr. Jennifer Rennie

Senior Lecturer, School of Education., Monash University

Ref: L05P0072