How Might Graphic Novels Engage Boys in School Reading? — Anita Heriot, Di Laycock, Alan Thompson, Peter Wiles

  • Boys and Reading (2005-06)
How Might Graphic Novels Engage Boys in School Reading? — Anita Heriot, The Haverford School, United States; Di Laycock, Barker College, Sydney, Australia; Alan Thompson, St John’s College, Johannesburg, South Africa; Peter Wiles, Brighton Grammar School, Melbourne, Australia

Across all sites, the visual dimension of the graphic novel enhanced boys’ comprehension of texts and facilitated the development of higher-order thinking, visual literacy and critical thinking. These research results are compatible with other current research that indicates boys’ engagement with reading can be enhanced when teachers recognise, value and incorporate boys’ out-of-school reading interests into the curriculum. Quote from student, “The graphics were extremely detailed and painted vivid images which enabled the reader to understand the Shakespearean language better.... You can see facial expressions and body movements. You can see all this other stuff that portrays emotions.” 

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Educator quote about the IBSC’s Action Research

"The research also highlighted the need for teachers to be familiar and confident in teaching a format that may be relatively new to them."

"We consider that the provision of individual reports by four researchers, at four sites and employing different methodologies enhances the rigour of this action research project."