Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. Reading Education


Language, Literacy, and Special Education


College of Education

First Advisor

Browne, Susan


Language arts (Elementary); Education; Elementary--Parent participation


Elementary Education and Teaching


The purpose of this qualitative research study was to explore how a partnership might be forged between parents and teachers to develop the literacy skills of upper elementary school students in grades 3-5. The family literacy event used in this study consisted of two sessions held at the students' school. The first session was a parent-only learning experience, and both parents and students were invited to participate in the program's second session. The content of the family literacy event used in this study focused on encouraging critical, high-quality literature conversations at home to benefit students' literacy development. Teacher researchers collected data using parent surveys, attendance records, anecdotal observations, and teacher research journals. Careful analysis of this data suggests parents want be involved in their children's development and value support from teachers to help them strengthen that role. Parents understood and could independently compose inferential questions, and they shared an intention to implement the strategies presented at the event in their literacy conversations at home. Benefits from both parent-only and parent-student structures were observed, suggesting both structures can be used to support literacy development. Implications for hosting family literacy events and opportunities for further research in family literacy are discussed.