In this practitioner inquiry, the teacher researcher found that a culture of high-stakes testing had pervaded her diverse, urban seventh-grade students' conceptions of reading; students associated reading with tests and skills-based worksheets rather than pleasure. Using students' voices, passions, and interests, the teacher researcher broadened students' reading conceptions and abilities by introducing them to Langer's reading theory. Students used the theory to develop deep understandings of their own and others' reading needs, skills, and desires. Students constructed understandings of self as reader, found pleasure in constructing personalized reading skills and strategies, and reconstructed notions of reading to assert authority and power. Students also helped one another (re)discover pleasure in reading.
Schaefer, M. B. (2017). Middle grades students' understandings of what it means to read in a high-stakes environment. Journal of Adult & Adolescent Literacy, 61(3), 247-256.