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Fall 2021 Meeting #2

Meeting #2 11/22/21

11:30 am

Reading: Dawan Coombs – School Culture, Struggling Adolescent Readers, and the Dialogical Self

Our second discussion centered on exploring the concept of identity in relation to both the act of teaching reading as well as in the act of reading itself.

Participants shared anecdotes about their own experiences as developing (and continuing to develop as) readers. In particular, we discussed the nature of “ascribed” vs. “avowed”identity positions – those identity positions given to us (ex: someone may be ascribed the identity position of “developmental” or “basic” reader) vs. those identity positions we choose (ex: we might choose to identify as athletes, musicians, artists, etc.).

This discussion dove deeper into the work of Hubert Hermans and Dialogical Self Theory and examined the way these identity positions shape our reading experiences. We also spent time thinking about how reading—itself—can function as a force molding one’s identity. Reading, we understood, is not a neutral act. It makes a palpable difference in the reader. Thus, the teaching of reading must also consider how our experiences with learning to read academic texts can shape not just our attitudes toward reading but also forge complex and durable attitudes about ourselves as readers and students.

In our next session, we look forward to reading Bob Fecho’s article, “Literacy Practice and the Dialogical Self: Isaac Making Meaning.

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