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Enacted Reading Comprehension: Using Bodily Movement to Aid the Comprehension of Abstract Text Content.

  • Author(s): Kaschak, Michael P
  • Connor, Carol M
  • Dombek, Jennifer L
  • et al.
Abstract

We report a design study that assessed the feasibility of Enacted Reading Comprehension (ERC), an intervention designed to teach 3rd and 4th grade students (n = 40 and 25, respectively) to use gestures to understand an increasingly abstract set of texts. Students were taught to use gestures to understand the idea of "opposing forces" in a concrete setting-the forces at play as tectonic plates move past each other-and then taught to use the gestures to understand opposing forces in more abstract situations. For example, students were taught to use gestures to understand the opposing sides of an argument, and to understand the internal conflicts that arise as individuals are faced with moral dilemmas. The results of our design study suggest that ERC has promise as a method for introducing students to the idea of using gesture to understand text content, and to employ this strategy in a range of reading contexts.

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