What no bedtime story means: narrative skills at home and school



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From: Heath “ What no bedtime story means: narrative skills at home and school”

p. 99-105

What Mainstream children learn to expect/participate in during literacy events.


Rule

Age

  Rules they learn to follow

Examples

1

6 months

Give attention to books and information

Derived from books



Reading cycles between mother and child (p.99)

(M: requests labels, talk, Q/A



2

6 months

Acknowledge questions form books (p.100)

Beyond labels

What …say? Who is…?



3

When they start to talk

Respond to conversational allusions in the content of books;  they act as Q/A who have a knowledge of books

Black dog on street linked by adult to children’s book

4

Beyond the age of 2

Children use their knowledge of books to legitimate their departure from “truth”

Adults reward “book talk” even when it is not directly relevant to ongoing conversation

5


Preschool children

Accept book and book related activities as entertainment

When preschoolers are captive audiences adults reach for books. Ask children to describe their likes, opinions etc.

6

Preschoolers

Announce their factual and fictional narratives

Formulaic openings



Adults judge as best narratives which start with setting and character


7

3 years old

Children are expected to listen and wait as an audience

Adults start to discourage participatory role. Children prefer to “read” to the adults.


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