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Issues in Educational Research, 2021, Vol 31(1), 204-223.
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A survey of Western Australian teachers' use of texts in supporting beginning readers

Simmone Pogorzelski, Susan Main and Susan Hill
Edith Cowan University, Australia

Connected text reading is crucial to beginning reading development as this is where children apply the reading skills they are learning. The most recent version of the Australian Curriculum includes the requirement that teachers use both predictable and decodable texts in early reading instruction. As each text type is underpinned by a different approach to reading instruction, this creates a potential dilemma for teachers when implementing the curriculum. A preliminary study of the instructional practices used to teach reading in the first two years of schooling was therefore conducted to investigate how early years teachers make use of two different text types that are arguably incompatible. An online survey regarding approaches to reading instruction and use of different text types was distributed to Western Australian Pre-primary and Year 1 teachers via several social media platforms. A total of 138 teachers responded. Survey responses indicated that these teachers do not have a coherent understanding of the purpose of different text types in beginning reading instruction. The findings highlight the need to improve early years teachers' knowledge of the instructional strategies aligned to each text type so that they can make informed decisions when supporting children's reading development.
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Authors: Simmone Pogorzelski (corresponding author) completed a Master of Special Education at Macquarie University which focused on reading disability and phonological processing deficits in older, low progress readers. She has a Bachelor of Psychology from Murdoch University and is currently completing her PhD in the School of Education at Edith Cowan University in Western Australia.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-6787-4624
Email: s.pogorzelski@ecu.edu.au

Susan Main PhD is a Senior Lecturer in Education at Edith Cowan University in Western Australia. Her teaching and research interests include preparing pre-service and in-service teachers to teach children with diverse abilities, including evidence-based approaches to literacy instruction, managing challenging behaviour, and using technology to facilitate learning.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5955-4222
Email: s.main@ecu.edu.au

Susan Hill PhD is a Senior Research Fellow in the School of Education at Edith Cowan University. Her broad research interests include literacy practices, school-based support for students experiencing disadvantage and post-compulsory education pathways.
ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1833-2500
Email: susan.hill@ecu.edu.au

Please cite as: Pogorzelski, S., Main, S. & Hill, S. (2021). A survey of Western Australian teachers' use of texts in supporting beginning readers. Issues in Educational Research, 31(1), 204-223. http://www.iier.org.au/iier31/pogorzelski.pdf

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