This case study research sought to examine family literacy through
a detailed description of the nature of family literacy in one
low-income community; to contribute to the knowledge base regarding
circumstances that facilitate or impede literacy and to offer a new
model to help understand the complex nature of family literacy. The
participants were chosen by purposive sampling. They included
parents and children in eight low- income New Brunswick families;
and the principal, resource room teacher and three classroom
teachers at the school attended by the children. Data were
collected at the homes of the families and at the school the
children attended. The findings add to the research base for family
literacy and are based on a broad definition of literacy as "a
vehicle for communication and learning and for people to gain
greater control of their lives," show the "multifaceted aspect of
family literacy and the danger in using a deficit model and
generalizing about the literacy needs of low-income families," and
offer "An Interactive Model for Family Literacy" to inform practice
and further research.
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