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Secondary Science Education,
Explicit Vocabulary Instruction
Embedded Vocabulary Instruction
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AbstractThe vocabulary demands of secondary science classrooms has been well documented. As the language of science is complex and specific to the content area or the particular discipline, instruction on science vocabulary must take place. Vocabulary instruction can be categorized as explicit or embedded instruction based on the goal and methods being utilized. In order to determine which vocabulary instruction to apply, rich vocabulary assessments must be developed to understand student vocabulary needs. The following capstone project represents a revised curriculum for a NYS Regents Earth Science course taught to an integrated co-taught 9th and 10th grade class. The curriculum was revised with explicit vocabulary instruction activities, modified learning activities through a vocabulary lens, target vocabulary lists, and vocabulary assessments.
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Sight Vocabulary and Computers: the Effect of Stories Written in the Program PowerPoint on the Acquisition of Sight Vocabulary in First Grade StudentsBegy, Gerald; Pratt, Christopher J.; The College at Brockport (2002-05-01)The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of using fifth grade students' stories presented in a PowerPoint format as a tool for developing sight vocabulary for first graders. The subjects were two heterogeneously grouped classes, a first grade and fifth grade class, from a suburban upstate school district in New York. There were twenty first graders who served as both treatment group A and treatment group B. The fifth grade students served as the cross-aged tutors that helped the first graders as they read. Pretests of sight words were administered before the first grade students read the stories in printed format or PowerPoint format. The class was divided so that ten read one form of the story and ten read the other. After three readings of the story a posttest was administered. The groups then switched and the study was repeated. The mean scores were then compared. The statistical analysis indicated that there was not a statistically significant difference between the mean scores of the two treatments. The analysis also indicated that there was not a statistically significant difference between the pretest and the posttest scores for both treatments.
Diagnostic Theory of Information as a Testing Technique to Ascertain the Different Levels of Spanish Vocabulary SkillsRibble, Robert B.; Bennette-Kinkead, Eliza; The College at Brockport (1990-05-01)The purpose of this study was to investigate the use of information theory as a testing technique to diagnose the different levels of Spanish vocabulary skills. This study is not an attempt to analyze mistakes or to debate which language proficiency test is the best in testing language abilities or expertness. This test was constructed to determine the readability and the validity of information theory as a testing tool. A secondary purpose was to determine whether this technique could help increase a person's ability to comprehend reading material at their level of second language learning. Vocabulary skills were tested at the beginner, intermediate, advanced and native stages of language proficiency. This study consisted of three experimental groups. The first was composed of fifty students from the Allendale Columbia School who are learning Spanish as a second language. Their ages ranged from twelve to nineteen years old. This group was further categorized as non-native language learners at the beginner, intermediate and advanced levels of language development. The second group consisted of non-educated native Spanish speakers and language trained non-native Spanish speakers and finally, the third group was composed of non-language trained educated Spanish speakers and language trained native Spanish speakers. The first group was tested with a variety of reading materials in the target language. This was done to verify their language level. The materials presented consisted of two to three paragraphs with part of the information deleted. The objective of the test was for the subjects to encode the missing letters within a five minute time frame. All three groups were presented with a similar testing procedure at different levels of difficulty. The reading passages consisted of approximately 200 to 250 bits of information each. Shannon's citation for calculating redundancy was used to compute the predictability of the passages, as well as, to determine the level of each subject tested. The subjects in group one made significant improvement on test scores at their instructional level. The second and third group made positive, yet not significant improvements at their level of language proficiency. Within the limitations of this study the following conclusions can be drawn: 1. The findings of this project suggest that the results of this study must be interpreted with caution and can only be generalized to a similar population. 2. The findings failed to show any significant difference between a language trained non-native Spanish speaker and a non-language trained native Spanish speaker. 3. The findings suggested that for classroom applications and implications further research is warranted.
Effective strategies for teaching content vocabulary to English Language LearnersBrightman, Kerri A. (2015)The number of English language learners (ELLs) enrolled and being educated in schools in the United States is increasing. At the same time, there is greater accountability for the academic performance of ELLs, but they continue demonstrate poor performance in content areas such as Math and English Language Arts (ELA). This case study examined the preparedness for and the effectiveness of the instructional strategies being used by a group of 8th grade math and ELA teachers when teaching their content vocabulary to ELLs. It also investigated the challenges encountered by these teachers when working with ELLs, and examined their attitudes and beliefs about having ELLs in their classrooms. Data was obtained from teachers through the use of a observations. The results determined that this group of teachers had very little experience teaching ELLs and had received negligible professional training in preparation for teaching the ELLs. The results also showed some limited use of effective instructional strategies in their classrooms, and that these teachers view their instruction as not having a positive impact on the academic development of ELLs. Implications with regard to the need for additional training and a need for future research are discussed.