Ronald GallimoreEveryone's a teacher to someone (John Wooden)


Reese, L. J. & Gallimore, R. (2000). Immigrant Latinos' cultural model of literacy development: An evolving perspective on home-school discontinuities. American Journal of Education, 108, 2, 103-134.

Reese & Gallimore (2000) PDF

The parents’ views of literacy change over time in response in response to American schools and teachers. When the children entered kindergarten, only 25% of the parents reported reading aloud to their children on occasion. Many parents believed reading aloud to younger children would be a waste of time because the children would not be able to comprehend. However, as the children entered school and teachers either required home reading as part of homework assignments or provided incentives for joining book clubs, more parents began reading aloud with their children. By the middle of 1st grade, over 90% reported reading at least occasionally with their children. In some homes, parents also reported changing their ideas about reading as they observed their children to benefit from such reading sessions. The response of the parents in our random sample suggest that teachers can have a powerful impact on parents simply by encouraging them to provide children with reading materials and opportunities, including reading to and with their children.

Reese, L., Garnier, H., Gallimore, R., & Goldenberg, C. (2000). Longitudinal analysis of the antecedents of emergent Spanish literacy and middle-school English reading achievement of Spanish-speaking students. American Educational Research Journal, 37, 3 , 633-662.

Students’ performance among children in the sample varied substantially from kindergarten through 7th grade. By grade 7, teacher ratings of performance range from 1 to 7 (on a 7-point scale), and standardized test percentile scores in English reading range from 1 to 91 and in math from 1 to 95. Thirty-six percent had average 7th grade reading scores (36th to 64th %tile); 11% had scores above the 65th %tile, and 33% were below the 17th %tile on nationally standardized tests of English reading achievement. In middle school, 16% of the students were enrolled in gifted, honors, or accelerated programs of instruction. Less than 5 per cent were placed in special education at any time during elementary or middle school.
Parents in our sample view learning to read as a “bottom-up” process, beginning with the learning letter sounds and syllables and blending these to form words. They see this as a process facilitated by rote drill and best learned in school or in a formal setting. Their model of literacy development and how it is taught shapes how they work with their children on homework. Parents were observed using story books and school worksheets to practice reading in essentially the same way—they focused on surface features of the text and on decoding. When they read with their children for other purposes—for entertainment or to share Bible stories with a moral—they discussed the meaning of the text in ways that were not observed with school reading materials.
Early literacy development in Spanish is a powerful predictor of English reading performance through middle school. Children who enter kindergarten with some familiarity with Spanish text and experiences with reading in Spanish learn to read more efficiently in the early grades, in both Spanish and English. This early advantage increases over the years. We tested children in Spanish on individual tests of concepts about print and letter and word recognition at the beginning and end of kindergarten. Kindergarten Spanish literacy scores were not only correlated with reading performance on both Spanish and English standardized tests in grade one, but the correlations increased each year to .47 by the end of grade 7 when all the children were tested only in English reading. Early literacy development, whether in Spanish or English, provides an initial and lasting advantage. This finding supports a policy of providing rich, balanced early reading instruction that includes not only phonemic awareness and decoding skills, but frequent, well organized lessons focused on meaning and comprehension of text.
Some exposure to English prior to entering school is associated with earlier transition from Spanish reading to English later on in elementary school, and in turn is associated with higher end-of-middle school English reading performance. Students whose parents had lived longer in the U.S. had somewhat higher scores on oral English (on the Bilingual Syntax Measure) than those whose parents had been less time in the country. Those students with higher BSM scores in English tended to be those who were transitioned to English reading earlier (in grade 2 or 3) and who were more proficient readers in middle school. Children who attended preschool in the U.S. (some were Spanish language schools, some were not) had higher 7th grade English reading scores.

Reese, et al. (2000) PDF

Goldenberg, C. N., Gallimore, R., Reese, L. J., & Garnier, H. (2001). Cause or effect? A longitudinal study of immigrant Latinos’ parents aspirations and expectations and their children's school performance. American Educational Research Journal, 38, 3, 547-582.

What levels of formal schooling do immigrant Latino parents hope and expect for their children? Do parents’ expectations influence children’s school achievement, or are parents’ expectations a reflection of children’s school performance? Do aspirations or expectations diminish the longer parents are in the U.S. or if they experience discrimination? We address these questions in a longitudinal study (kindergarten to sixth grade) of 81 Latino children and their immigrant parents. We employ a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods based on teacher ratings of children; scores on tests of academic achievement; and parent interviews where parents reported expectations and aspirations for their children’s future educational attainment, perceptions of children’s school interest and achievement, number of years living in the U.S., and perceptions of discrimination. Our primary findings are that (1) parents’ educational aspirations are high and invariant throughout the elementary years, regardless of children’s academic performance; expectations, however, fluctuate; (2) children’s school performance influences parents’ expectations, but expectations do not influence performance; and (3) immigrant Latino parents attribute high instrumental value to formal schooling, and neither years in the U.S. nor perceived discrimination diminish this belief. Our findings suggest educators should rethink their beliefs that Latino children’s achievement is compromised by parents’ low educational aspirations and expectations.

Goldenberg, et al (2001) PDF