Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Wilma Kuhlman


The purpose of this study was to examine works of children's literature that included humans that could fly, and to further examine the reaction of students who were exposed to the specific works. Twenty-six books were studied and the results were compiled using qualitative procedures. The data that were examined in the study of the books included reviews and editorial commentaries from many sources and the researchers own notes, taken during the reading and studying of the books identified by this research. The research conducted with the literature details the patterns and similarities that can be found in the cross section of works studied. These include variations of dream patterns and themes involving cultural identities and social issues. Four students participated in the study, which introduced them to a wide variety of the books used in the first phase of the research. Data were collected from their journal entries, transcriptions of audiotapes that were recorded during discussions and interviews, and written or visual work that was completed as part of the project. The students believed that the books that they were introduced to were written for the purpose of inspiring imagination in the readers, and that they thematically represented ideas about freedom. All of the data from both phases of the study were triangulated to reach conclusions with regard to the literature that is available to educators with a motif of human flying, and in drawing conclusions regarding what students believe about this specific type of literature.


A Thesis Presented to the Department of Teacher Education and the Faculty of the Graduate School University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Science University of Nebraska at Omaha. Copyright Kathleen M. Hinman September, 2003