Reading Difficulties In Children Psychology Exam Essay Prep

1704 words - 7 pages

What challenges are children faced with when learning to read? Why do some of them struggle? Base your answer on evaluation of the evidence.
Typically, the challenges that children experience when learning to read exist due to problems in sound categorisation, problems with memory, or problems in comprehension. As a result of these problems children may face challenges such as an insensitivity to rhyme and alliteration, difficulties with rehearsal, and an inability to grasp the structure of a story or narrative. Through the exploration of why children face challenges when learning to read it is possible to identify the challenges they face as well as any potential for interventions.
Poor readers can often be identified due to having an insensitivity to rhyme or alliteration. These challenges are the result of an inability to recognise the ‘shape’ of sounds and also an inability to recognise the constituent elements within sounds. Both of these are aspects of sound categorisation. Sound categorisation in young children is explored through the combination of longitudinal studies and training studies. This is necessary as longitudinal studies may present a correlation, however, training studies are required to establish a cause and effect. Bradley and Bryant (1983) conducted a longitudinal study of 400 children aged between 4-5 years old. They aimed to see if children’s ability to categorise a sound would account for any variance in reading or spelling in later years. Over 3 years, the participants were tested at 4 different times and the dependent variable included word recall, IQ, age, early verbal intelligence, and sound categorisation. Results showed that nearly half of the variance of reading scores at the end of the 3-year period were accounted for by a combination of all the variables, with a significant amount of the variance being explained for by sound categorisation (.06). Generally, this shows that all of the dependent variables together contribute to the explanation of reading age at ages 7/8, and specifically it shows that there is a significant amount of evidence supporting that the result of sound categorisation tasks do play a role in the prediction of reading ability three years later. Bradley and Bryant (1983) went on to conduct an intervention study in which they took 65 low scoring children from their longitudinal study and divided them equally into four groups. These groups were each then subject to a different method of training sessions over a 2-year period. Group 1 engaged in sound categorisation training, group 2 engaged in sound categorisation training and letter identification training, group 3 engaged in conceptual categorisation training, while group 4 did not engage in any kind of categorisation training. At the end of the 2-year period, each of the groups was once again tested on their reading and spelling. Results found that although Group 1 improved beyond groups 3 and 4, group 2 improved more so than group 1. T...


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