A consideration of culture in moral theme comprehension: comparing Native and European American students

Journal of Moral Education 35 (1):71-87 (2006)
The use of stories to teach character is popular among educators, yet little is known about student comprehension of these stories. An important factor that may influence comprehension of stories and story themes is culture. The purpose of this study was to examine the extent to which students from a Native American culture understand European?based stories in the same way as European American children. Native and European American students in Grade 4?8 (ages 10?18) read eight short stories depicting eight different virtues and identified the best theme from a list of choices. Differences were found between the two groups' theme comprehension scores. Each group also had different variables predicting their theme comprehension scores. Reasons for these differences and educational implications for the findings are discussed
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