Responding to Literature

Responding to literature is the way in which one reacts to something that has been read or listened to (Cooper, 1993). This process begins before reading as one thinks about what is to be read and continues during and after reading (Martinez & Roser, 1991). Rosenblatt (1938/1976; 1978) has contended for many years that individuals construct their own meanings by transacting with the text. When response activities are the natural things one does with texts that have been read or listened to, they help students develop deeper understandings and help them relate what they have read to their own personal experiences (Gambrell, 1986; Hickman, 1983). It is through this process that individuals learn to construct meaning or comprehend (Cullinan, Harwood, & Galda, 1983).

Response activities teach children to read and write in several ways:

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