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A shared reading intervention with parents to enhance young children's early literacy skills

A pragmatic randomised controlled trial was used to investigate the effects of two forms of shared reading on children's language and literacy skills. Parents of 80 children in the preparatory year of school participated in an eight-week home reading intervention. Families were assigned to one of three groups: dialogic reading (DR), dialogic reading with the addition of print referencing (DR + PR), or an attention-matched control group. Analyses of change from pre- to post-intervention showed significant effects for the DR and DP+PR groups compared to the control group on three of the six emergent literacy measures: expressive language, rhyme, and concepts about print. At three-month follow-up assessment, the two intervention groups maintained significantly better performance on the measure of concepts about print only. These findings illustrate the potential of a brief home-based intervention for promoting children's emergent literacy. (author abstract)
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