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Article
Reconsidering genre theory in K-12 schools: A response to school reforms in the United States
Journal of Second Language Writing (2011)
  • Meg L. Gebhard, University of Massachusetts - Amherst
  • Ruth Harman
Abstract

Education reforms in the United States have placed new demands on English language learners (ELLs) and their teachers in K-12 public schools. In response, many teachers, teacher educators, and literacy scholars are reexamining genre theory and genre-based pedagogy as a way of supporting the academic literacy development of the growing number of ELLs attending primary and secondary schools in the United States. In this article, we briefly describe the impact of federal reforms such as "No Child Left Behind" legislation on L2 literacy practices in K-12 schools. Next, we outline some core epistemological and methodological assumptions informing different perspectives of genre and genre-based pedagogy and how these concepts and methods have relevance for supporting L2 academic literacy development in K-12 contexts. We conclude by outlining the components of a research agenda aimed at supporting K-12 teachers in critically using genre-based pedagogy to support the academic literacy development of ELLs over time.

Keywords
  • Academic language; Genre; Grammar instruction; Halliday; L2 writing; Metalanguage; Systemic functional linguistics; Teacher education
Publication Date
2011
Citation Information
Meg L. Gebhard and Ruth Harman. "Reconsidering genre theory in K-12 schools: A response to school reforms in the United States" Journal of Second Language Writing Vol. 20 (2011)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/meg_gebhard/13/