The role of student attention for predicting kindergarten word reading was investigated among 432 students. Using Strengths and Weaknesses of ADHD Symptoms and Normal Behavior Rating Scale behavior rating scores, the authors conducted an exploratory factor analysis, which yielded three distinct factors that reflected selective attention. In this study, the authors focused on the role of one of these factors, which they labeled attention-memory, for predicting reading performance. Teacher ratings of attention-memory predicted word reading above and beyond the contribution of phonological awareness and vocabulary knowledge. In addition, the relations between four teacher practices and attention ratings for predicting reading performance were examined. Using hierarchical linear modeling, the authors found significant interactions between student attention and teacher practices observed during literacy instruction. In general, as ratings of attention improved, better kindergarten word reading performance was associated with high levels of classroom behavior management. However, better word reading performance was not associated with high levels of teacher task orienting. A significant three-way interaction was also found among attention, individualized instruction, and teacher task redirections. The role of regulating kindergarten student attention to support beginning word reading skill development is discussed.
Sáez, L., Folsom, J. S., Al Otaiba, S., & Schatschneider, C. (2012). Relations among student attention behaviors, teacher practices, and beginning word reading skill. Journal of Learning Disabilities, 45(5), 418-432. doi: 10.1177/0022219411431243