Guatemalan Mayan book-sharing styles and their relation to parents’ schooling and children's narrative contributions

Ana María Nieto, Diana Leyva, Hirokazu Yoshikawa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Little is known about parents’ book-sharing styles in indigenous communities undergoing social and cultural change. This study investigated Guatemalan Mayan parents’ book-sharing styles and their relation to parents’ schooling experience and children's narrative contributions. Thirty parents and their first-grade children (ages 7–9) were audiotaped sharing a worded picture book. Most parents either adopted the role of the sole narrator (40%) or shared the role of the narrator with their children (40%); other parents focused on teaching literacy skills (20%). Guatemalan Mayan parents with greater schooling experience were more likely to adopt the sole-narrator style than other styles. Children whose parents adopted the sole-narrator style contributed significantly less to the story (both in amount and type of new information provided) than children whose parents adopted other styles. Implications for family literacy programs working with Guatemalan Mayan and other indigenous communities are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalEarly Childhood Research Quarterly
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2018



  • Book-reading
  • First-grade children
  • Indigenous
  • Latin American
  • Narratives
  • Parents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science

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