Year of Publication


Paper Type

Doctoral Dissertation


College of Education and Human Services

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership (EdD)



First Advisor

Dr. Larry Daniel

Second Advisor

Dr. Betty Bennett

Third Advisor

Dr. Cheryl Fountain


The present study investigated home literacy environments established through reading with children, engaging in literacy activities, and having literacy materials provided, along with families' participation in literacy-related school events. One hundred one kindergarten children and their families from five classrooms in two inner-city urban elementary schools were invited to participate in the "Learning the ABCs" project. A total of 68 families gave consent. Participation in the project included receiving 15 weeks of Home Literacy Bags. The 68 participating children were randomly assigned into two intervention groups using cluster sampling of the five classes. Group One received weekly bags with four activities while Group Two received weekly bags with four activities, a variety of materials, and one book.

The primary purpose of this study was to determine the strength of four family involvement variables (reading with children, engaging in literacy activities, having literacy materials provided, and participating in literacy-related events at school) in predicting kindergarten students' gain scores on three literacy assessments (ALRI, TERA-3, and DIBELS). The primary research question was: To what extent can kindergarten students' ALRI, TERA-3, and DIBELS gain scores be explained by participation in family involvement activities?

A secondary purpose of the study was to determine which of the family involvement activities was the strongest predictor of kindergarten students' literacy achievement as measured by the literacy assessments. The secondary research question was: Which family involvement activity is the strongest predictor of gains in kindergarten students' letter and sound knowledge and phonological awareness?

Literacy assessments were implemented using a pre/post test design. The literacy gain scores served as the dependent variables and the family involvement activities served as the independent variables. Each variable set was included in a regression analysis, which was followed up with an analysis of regression structure coefficients (rs) to determine the individual variable contributions.

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