Leveling the playing field: Fostering literacy after-school

Patricia G Armendariz, University of Texas at El Paso


This thesis will discuss students in the United States who attend school Monday through Friday, approximately six hours a day, 180 days of the year. It will consider how time away from school is utilized which has a direct bearing to student academic success. ^ It will review the literature on quality after-school programs that provide safe, engaging environments that motivate and inspire learning outside the regular school day. Whether it's achievement test preparation, homework assistance, learning enrichment camp or literacy clinic, there is compelling evidence that organized, structured after-school programs play an important role in the lives and education of children. ^ After-school programs have the potential to level the educational gains between affluent and poor children as seen in an after-school reading camp for economically poor third grade students in an urban public elementary school in El Paso, Texas. The planning, implementation, and recommendations of the after-school program and home reading are detailed for replication. ^ The results of the El Paso after-school camp, based on standardized reading test scores, collaborated what the literature claims, that quality after-school programs narrow the achievement gap between affluent and poor children. In addition, a home reading involvement verified the academic achievement gains that children who read at home make. Of those students who made the most gains were those students who attended the after-school reading camp and read one hour nightly for four nights of the week during the school year (36 weeks). ^ Based on the efficacy of the after-school reading enrichment camp and home reading, both are recommended. The after-school camp will support those students who are reading below grade level, and home reading offers students, school-wide, the opportunity to continue making reading progress. ^

Subject Area

Education, Language and Literature|Education, Reading

Recommended Citation

Armendariz, Patricia G, "Leveling the playing field: Fostering literacy after-school" (2005). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI1425905.