On Tuesday 12th of March, Dr. Jody Polleck (Hunter College, New York) will present her work on bibliotherapeutic book clubs and their impact on adolescents’ socio-emotional and academic development. This lecture is hosted by Patrick Snellings.
Roeterseilandcampus gebouw E 0.15, Tuesday 12th of March, 16:00 – 17:00
Roetersstraat 11, 1018 WB Amsterdam
Bibliotherapeutic Book Clubs as Culturally Sustaining Practice
This research talk will focus on 15 years of data collection on the impact of bibliotherapeutic book clubs with ethnically, linguistically, and neurally diverse urban adolescents. Contributing to the field of bibliotherapy and social-emotional and academic development (Elias, 2006; Gil-Olarte, Martin, & Brackett, 2006), Dr. Polleck’s (2010; 2011; 2016) qualitative research has investigated how book clubs can be used with diverse urban youth to enhance not only their literacy skills but also to promote social and emotional development along with a sense of agency. She collected longitudinal data from 20 students over a five-year period, documenting their lived experiences and the impact the book club had on their successes after secondary school. Her data analysis demonstrated how book club interventions enhance students’ literacy skills by allowing them to collaboratively develop deeper textual analyses. Additionally, her research shows how book clubs that used culturally relevant and sustaining texts became a mediating tool for marginalized youth to discuss critical issues in their own lives. Her conclusions illustrate how the youth participants used characters in the books as catalysts for reflecting on and developing solutions to their own difficulties, from dealing with familial situations (Polleck, 2011) to improving peer relationships (Polleck, 2011). She will also share research on an intervention that analyzed how young urban adolescents of color utilized the book club to discuss how race, class, and gender impact their lives and the lives of the characters in the novels (Polleck & Epstein, 2015). Most recently, Dr. Polleck collaborated with Dr. Jurgen Tijms, using book clubs with adolescents in Amsterdam from urban, low socioeconomic areas in their first year of secondary education (Tijms, Stoop & Polleck, 2018). Results revealed that the intervention enhanced students’ reading attitudes and comprehension and their social-emotional competencies. Finally, Dr. Polleck will introduce her current collaborations with Dr. Tijms where they are studying how book clubs can be implemented with adolescents with ASD who are transitioning into college and career. The objectives of this most recent research project are to examine the ways the bibliotherapeutic book club interventions impact diverse adolescents with ASD, specifically their social and emotional skills and reading dispositions.