Is a faster pace of letter instruction associated with other teaching practices?
The past few years have seen a shift towards a faster pace of letter instruction in Norwegian firstgrade
classrooms. Introducing the letters faster has the potential to alter teaching practices more
generally, not only by freeing up time for more individually adapted literacy instruction but also
by making it possible for students to start reading and writing texts earlier. The aim of the present
study is to investigate whether the pace of letter instruction is associated with the amount of
time devoted to various other relevant teaching practices. Information about the pace of letter
instruction and about other teaching practices was provided, through questionnaires completed in
December and June, by 51 Norwegian first-grade teachers who finished letter instruction at various
times between September and June. The results indicate that introducing the letters faster really
does affect other teaching practices, mainly in the second semester, in that more time is devoted
to students’ writing, greater use is made of levelled books and less time is spent on worksheets and
on handwriting practice. However, there would seem to be room for teachers to further exploit the
opportunities that arise when the letters are introduced faster.
Copyright (c) 2019 Kristin Sunde, Kjersti Lundetræ
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