Years ago, I was told that one of the reasons that American Indian educational issues are not studied by IES/NCES (Institute of Educational Sciences/National Center for Education Statistics) is because American Indians represent too small a proportion of the population and they are not a politically “hot” area for study. I was still a graduate student at the time, and was participating in a government-sponsored workshop on using the NCES databases–specifically the NELS:88 (National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988) database for research. Clearly, active study of educational issues related to this very important (to me) small population has not changed.
However, there isa site now that dedicated to American Indians, and it can be found through the link below. If you are interested research or research results about American Indian education issues, this may be the place to start. If enough interest is generated in the site, maybe issues related to indigenous populations will hit the forefront.
For K-12 teachers, when I taught reading (“developmental” or for learning handicapped) I found that comics were a great way to get reluctant readers to read. The small amount of text per frame and the pictures to expand on the text helped students who were easily distracted to concentrate because text was presented in small doses, and the pictures would help give context, meaning, and focus. When I started teaching with comics, I had to pre-screen all materials myself. Within a few years, there were commercial school-oriented comics flooding the market, with the same intent: getting students to read for sustained periods of time.
If you have had similar experiences, or unique ones related to reading, please post comments. Reading is so important, and my own research found an almost perfect correlation of reading and math, that I think it is in the interest of students at all levels to keep the reading methods conversation alive. So share your success, or even your failures, with techniques you’ve used to motivate students to read or to teach reading to non-readers.