STRATEGIES FOR COMPREHENSION OF EXTENDED AND HOLISTIC METAPHOR/ANALOGIES IN SCIENCE TEXTBOOKS BY FOURTH-GRADE STUDENTS (INQUIRY, READABILITY, TRENDS)

CEIL LIPSCHITZ, Fordham University

Abstract

Previous research on science textbooks and development of science concepts indicate that fourth-grade students have difficulty with comprehension of metaphorical sentences for science information. This study, in order to reduce misconceptions and promote comprehension, has presented a set of strategies for analyzing and interpreting metaphor/analogies in written text.^ Sternberg's (1977, 1978) componential theory has been operationalized to test for comprehension of science information with fourth-grade students. The 15 null hypotheses compared cognitive strategies (verbal, exemplar, pictorial) with the structural form of metaphor/analogies (extended, holistic). The dependent variables were scores on the three reasoning tasks in stages (identification, inference, and synthesis).^ Three distinct groups made up the random sample: the unskilled of 30 fourth-grade students with a mean reading score of approximately 4.16, the average of 30 fourth-grade students with a mean reading score of approximately 5.52, and the proficient of 30 fourth-grade students with a mean reading score of approximately 7.42.^ Analysis of variance tested 15 null hypotheses for the relationship between scores on the CAT and scores on the MST for each group. As a result of Eta, six null hypotheses were partially retained. Correlations for both structural forms of the MST indicated a nonlinear or curvilinear relationship between cognitive strategies for science information and restructured metaphorical sentences in the science text.^ Mean reading scores on both structural forms of the MST were highest for the proficient and lowest for the unskilled reading ability group.^ Examination of the incorrect responses indicated fewer errors occurring during the extended structural task where the additional clause or cue was provided to facilitate the reasoning process of fourth-grade students for comprehension of the science information. Since reading and strategies vary from student to student, a curved line best fitted the trend of the data in this investigation. Two major educational implications indicated that: (1) Restructuring the metaphorical sentence and training in strategy skills should improve comprehension skills for science information; (2) Reevaluation of science materials should help identify the kinds of reasoning strategies and inquiry process skills needed for successfully completing metaphor/analogies and related science tasks. ^

Subject Area

Reading instruction

Recommended Citation

LIPSCHITZ, CEIL, "STRATEGIES FOR COMPREHENSION OF EXTENDED AND HOLISTIC METAPHOR/ANALOGIES IN SCIENCE TEXTBOOKS BY FOURTH-GRADE STUDENTS (INQUIRY, READABILITY, TRENDS)" (1985). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8508119.
https://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8508119

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