Handbook of Research on Teaching Literacy Through the Communicative and Visual Arts

Volume II


James Flood, Shirley Brice Heath, and Diane Lapp, editors



This handbook brings together state-of-the-art research and practice on the evolving view of literacy as encompassing not only reading, writing, speaking, and listening, but also the multiple ways through which learners gain access to knowledge and skills. It forefronts as central to literacy education the visual, communicative, and performative arts, and the extent to which all of the technologies that have vastly expanded the meanings and uses of literacy originate and evolve through the skills and interests of the young.

In the years since the publication of the first volume of this handbook in 1997, visual and performative have come to be almost synonymous with communicative, and literacy research has come to encompass much more than decoding and encoding of verbal material. Literacy is now rarely spoken of in the singular or without descriptors such as “multimodal.” Along with this marked shift has come the widespread recognition that teachers and students have to become learners together. Volume II pushes the boundaries of literacy education through an interdisciplinary range of perceptions and approaches to multiple literacies in classrooms and between and beyond the niches of formal education. Contributions from leading literacy researchers from around the world are organized around four themes:

  • Historical and theoretical foundations
  • Methods of inquiry in the communicative, visual, and performative arts
  • Family and communicative contexts in the communicative,visual, and performing arts
  • Into the language arts classroom through the visual and communicative Arts

This volume retains the “Voices From the Field” feature — the view of practitioners and artists alike — from the 1997 handbook. However, in recognition of the fact that increasingly we are all “in the field” — inquiring and practicing at the same time — in Volume II these “voices” are interspersed throughout the four sections.

Overall, Volume II speaks to the urgent need for educators to explore, value, and incorporate into their own ways of knowing and doing the visual, communicative, and performative arts as central to literacy education, and to keep a sustained and consistent focus on equity and on the freedoms that are fundamental to the human spirit and critical to the future of investigating, analyzing, assessing, and transmitting the what and how of learning and literacy.

A project of the International Reading Association, published and distributed by Routledge/Taylor & Francis
© 2008 | 936 pp.
ISBN 13: 978-0805857009

Handbook of Research on Teaching Literacy

This book available from Routledge/Taylor & Francis

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