The effects of Hispanic children's literature on the self-esteem of lower socioeconomic Mexican American kindergarten children

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Texas Tech University

Culture plays an important part in the development of a child's self-esteem. Experts have stated that minimizing the differences between the home of culturally different children and the school is a major step in helping these students experience success in school. Incorporating the life experiences (through real or vicarious experiences) of these children will bring their home life into the classroom. It was assumed that culturally oriented literature may help fill this need.

Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine if being exposed to stories about the culture of Mexican Americans significantly affected the self-esteems of lower socioeconomic (SES) Mexican American kindergarten children, and to see if any differences detected could be explained by the language level of the child, as determined by the Language Assessment Scales (LAS). The first experimental group, designated Group A, listened to 18 selected stories about Mexican Americans. The second experimental group, designated Group B, listened and discussed the 18 selected stories. The third control group, designated Group C, neither listened to nor discussed the selected material. Subjects for this study were 123 Mexican American kindergarten children from three different elementary schools who participated in the free or reduced lunch program.

Self-esteem, Mexican American children