Examining Student Responses to Concept-Oriented Reading Instruction in Nutrition Education

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Michele H. Wallen (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/
Barbara Levin

Abstract: The concept-oriented reading instruction (CORI) framework was designed to increase student reading motivation, strategy usage, and conceptual learning. Thus far, CORI has only been studied in regards to science education. This descriptive mixed method case study examined two classes of sixth grade students' responses to CORI in nutrition education that relied heavily on inquiry, reading, and performance-based tasks which was implemented to help students develop conceptual knowledge in nutrition and improve their abilities to analyze influences on eating behaviors and habits. Each sixth grade class participated in a six-day CORI nutrition unit (N=63). Pre and post nutrition concept and skill questionnaires, pre and post student interest surveys, observations and field notes, and student artifacts were used to answer the following questions: 1) To what extent do students acquire conceptual knowledge when CORI is used to teach nutrition education?; 2) To what extent can students apply a health skill (analyzing influences) when CORI is used to teach nutrition education?; 3) In what ways does the use of CORI in nutrition education engage students?; 4) What interests students about reading informational and narrative texts provided in a CORI health class? Students in case 1 experienced significant gains in concept acquisition after a CORI nutrition unit; however concept gains in case 2 were non significant. There was no statistically significant evidence to suggest that the CORI unit affected students' skill acquisition and application. Gender and ethnicity did not have a statistically significant affect on students' concept and skill acquisition following a CORI nutrition unit. Responses to student interest surveys suggest a high level of interest in the hands-on activities and qualitative data report specific interest in the reading activities that were a part of the health education instruction. Quantitative data indicate increases in students' interest in information texts and using texts to find new information; however, quantitative data also suggest there is no change after a CORI nutrition unit in students' self-reported persistence even though a text is difficult to read. Qualitative data suggest an increase in student engagement in the CORI hands-on activities, reading assignments, cognitive processing of the material, and application in authentic tasks. Limitations of this study and implications for future research are also discussed.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2008
Concept-oriented reading, Health, Nutrition, Education, School
Content area reading $x Evaluation.
Nutrition $x Study and teaching (Middle School) $x Evaluation.
Reading (Middle School)
Reading comprehension.
Health education.

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