Date of Conferral
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
School leaders in a Virginia urban school district designed and implemented a reading-infused integrated curriculum to address Grade 3 students' struggles to read and comprehend grade-level text. Informed via a constructivist approach, the curriculum integrated the core subjects, reading, and service learning for developing competent readers, thinkers, and problem solvers. This instrumental case study focused on 13 Grade 3 teachers' perceptions of the integrated curriculum in regards to their students' reading achievement. Qualitative data were collected from face-to-face interviews, students' progress of work documents, and the district's integrated curriculum unit. Open coding was employed to analyze the data. Inductively, triangulated data sources were analyzed. Findings indicated that teachers perceived the integrated theme unit, teacher collaboration, and training in the area of reading to be beneficial, but that they found trainings on pedagogical practices of content integration and service learning to be lacking. Based on these findings, a project was developed to support the district's integrated curriculum program by providing a professional development program to Grade 3 teachers on pedagogical practices for implementing a constructivist-integrated curriculum. This project study can contribute to positive social change by providing the district's Grade 3 teachers with an integrated curriculum for students struggling to read and comprehend grade level text, which prepares students for school success, college, and the global work force.