The impact of multicultural trade books and an intervention on fourth graders' cultural attitudes

Susan Herberger Whitcomb

Abstract

As the United States population has become more diverse and the civil rights movement of the 1960s increased attentiveness to the change in population, the need for multicultural awareness has grown (Perry & Fraser, 1993). This study examined if teacher read alouds of multicultural trade books and a scripted instructional intervention could impact 187 fourth graders' cultural attitudes. The 10-session, 5-week study involved six reading teacher volunteers participating in one of the three group levels (treatment one: multicultural trade book read alouds, treatment two: multicultural trade books and a scripted instructional intervention, and treatment three: a control group). The mixed model ANOVA examined for any effects for treatment groups. While some slight differences in pre- and posttest scores were seen, the pretest and posttest results of the Student Multicultural Attitude Survey showed no statistically significant difference.