|Citation:||Dur‡n, R., Dur‡n, J., Perry-Romero, D., & Sanchez, E. (2001). Latino immigrant parents and children learning and publishing together in an after-school setting. Journal of Education for Students Placed At Risk, 6(1&2), 95-113. EJ624201.|
This research describes the first yearÕs activities of an after-school project that involves the development of computer-based literacy and empowerment for low-income Latino parents and their elementary school children. The study confirmed three ideas: (1) Latino parents have much to offer their children even though they might not always be familiar with schooled literacy practices; (2) through participation in the program, parents were able to increase their computer literacy; and (3) the after-school computer learning project created a new form of community-based organization that interconnected family members, teachers, university students, faculty, and community members. This new learning community helped familiarize parents with computers and information technology in a way that incorporated childrenÕs knowledge of computers and literacy tasks provided at school. Twenty-four parents and 20 children participated who were all first generation immigrants from Mexico with a limited knowledge of English. Oral pre and posttests were administered to the parents after each cycle of the program, but the children were not tested due to insufficient resources. The questions were about computer awareness, computer basics, word processing skills and telecommunication familiarity. The data collected from the pre and posttests were compared to determine changes in the parentsÕ computer literacy. Two qualitative case studies using ethnography and discourse analysis methods were conducted with parents investigating the interaction among parents and their children during computer sessions. This study has implications for after-school programs and others striving to link school day learning to learning in after school and at home. It suggests that computer technology is a powerful tool for engaging parents and community members in supporting student learning. This study was done with a very small sample in one school. It did not use a randomized sample or control group; therefore the results cannot be generalized to other groups and situations.
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