Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Speech, Language and Hearing Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. Yvette D. Hyter

Second Advisor

Dr. Nickola Wolf Nelson

Third Advisor

Dr. Jan Bedrosian

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Regena Fails Nelson

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Campus Only


The purpose of this study was to gain insight into low-income parents' perceptions of literacy practices at home and at school in order to build on the existing literature and create more relevant literacy experiences for children living in poverty. This research is based on the theory that a "mismatch" between low-income children's home and school experiences makes it difficult for them to connect the ideas learned in each environment.

In an attempt to build bridges that make the home and school environments of low-income children more congruent, data were gathered through in-depth interviews. These interviews provided insight into Head Start parents' perceptions of literacy, their role in literacy, and the school's role in literacy. These findings were then compared to a companion study that examined the teachers' perceptions of literacy in the classroom and at home.

From these findings, implications for practice were created based on the reports from the parents and teachers, as well as suggestions for developing collaborative relationships between teachers and parents.

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