• A 4th grade Curriculum Guide for writing instruction that aligns with the New York State Common Core reading and writing standards.

      Nelson, Kyle (2015)
      This curriculum project provides teachers with instructional resources and lesson plans that integrate writing into reading in a fourth grade classroom. It includes ways to structure writing within their classroom that create an engaging writing atmosphere where students are motivated and are willing to take risks as writers. Answering text based questions requires a particular process that includes understanding the prompt or question, organization or construction of ideas and explaining answers with text evidence. When writing, students are required to write under the three genres of narrative, informative and opinion. The research based strategies have been included as a guide for teachers, along with four modules that contain lesson plans with writing prompts that are part of the three genres. An appendix contains additional graphic organizers and assessment tools for teachers to use during writing instruction.
    • A.W.E.S.O.M.E. community programming in freshman residence halls: education through engagement.

      Tierney, Frank William (28/10/2012)
      Does residential programming produce important learning gains for college freshman beyond what they learn in the classroom? How do freshman residents in a small, regional comprehensive college feel about these programs? These questions, among others, were the focus of the present study. A group of 10 Resident Assistants in conjunction with the investigator developed 10 program units under the title of AWESOME, an acronym for Artistic, Wellness, Emotional, Spiritual, Occupational, Multicultural, and Educational; a community residential programming curriculum for college freshmen. Resident volunteers were exposed to 10 specific program topics and activities and were pre-and post-tested on their understanding of important program content. In addition, residents independently and anonymously completed consumer satisfaction surveys following their participation in program activities. Findings indicated that the AWESOME program produced consistent and numerous improvements in residents’ understanding of program content across all 10 topics. Additional information indicated that residents rated program goals, activities, and outcomes quite favorably. In spite of these positive effects, however, outcomes were limited by rather low attendance (11%) rates across programming sessions. Implications for future research and practices are offered.
    • Accounting for differences in literacy ability among children entering kindergarten.

      Sharpe, Sandra (2015)
      This capstone project explores the question of factors that may account for variance in literacy ability among children entering Kindergarten. This researcher has personal interest in this topic because of her own experience as a Kindergarten teacher. The most appropriate way to address this research question is with an exhaustive literature review and research synthesis. The synthesis produced five findings. First is that participation in a structured, formal preschool has a positive impact on the literacy development and school readiness of all children, regardless of their diversity or non-diversity, or socioeconomic status (SES). Second, the quality and type of instruction a child receives in preschool has an impact on that child’s literacy growth, and third, the impact from attending preschool is not directly influenced by a child’s SES or demographics. Fourth is that home literacy experiences have a greater impact on literacy development than SES regardless of the SES level. Fifth is that SES levels are factors in language and literacy development only indirectly because they can impact family stress, a mother’s well-being, and size and number of literacy activities in the home; low socioeconomic status and a mother’s level of education do not automatically mean poor literacy development, neither do they hinder literacy development when there is rich home literacy environment. The application of this new knowledge will result in professional development for Kindergarten and grade one teachers, and will take the form of a video accessible for free on YouTube and Teacher Tube.
    • The adaptability of read alouds.

      Palmer, Rachel (2014)
      The basis for this research is to examine the topic of the adaptability and flexibility of read alouds in the elementary classroom. [The] question [of] how elementary teachers can capitalize on the flexibility of the read aloud instructional strategy in order to enhance reading motivation and literacy skills of all their students is best answered through an extensive literature review. The synthesis of the review produced several pertinent findings: that active engagement in read alouds appears to increase the vocabulary size and word meaning of early elementary students, that an interactive read aloud approach has positive effects on the vocabulary development and comprehension of English language Learners, that teachers frequently use the interactive read aloud approach with narrative texts to focus on language plan and development, and that impactful read alouds occurs as a result of teacher’s explicit planning and involving frequent cognitively challenging questioning to improve students’ comprehension, These findings have a strong application to teacher practice in the elementary classroom and therefore will be presented to elementary teachers through an[d] in-person professional development workshop.
    • The Affective Factors that Influence a Child's Emergent Literacy Skills and Behaviors.

      Gawron, Taylor (State University of New York at Fredonia, 2018-08)
      Emergent literacy is a child's knowledge of reading and writing skills before they learn how to read and write words. This skill should be continued to be monitored through the transition from kindergarten to first grade. There are affective factors that affect a child's emergent literacy skill, self-efficacy, motivation, attitude and family factors. It is important for parents and guardians to be educated on what emergent literacy is and what they can do to support and enhance their child's skills and behaviors. As a result, a curriculum project was developed to present to a wide variety of school districts for parents to develop a better understanding of what emergent literacy is and what factors can influence their child's skill and behaviors. Also, this website will provide ideas and activities for parents to help to enhance their child's skill and support their learning.
    • American history simulations, reenactments, and educational games: a supplemental middle school curriculum.

      Moore, Kerrie L. (10/01/2013)
      This curriculum project is designed to supplement the New York State seventh and eighth grade American history social studies course with active learning strategies. Three strategies including simulations, reenactments, and educational games will be supplemented into each unit. A total of 33 active learning activities, equal numbers of each, will be added to the 11 units that comprise the two-year course of study. Students often find it difficult to absorb the information and be motivated by the content (Russell & Waters, 2010). Teachers find it hard to teach all the necessary content and still be able to go in depth on the material (Pattiz, 2004). The three active learning strategies designed as supplements to the social studies curriculum have been proven to be effective in increasing student interest on the subject as well as their achievement.
    • Are teachers promoting extracurricular activities to low achieving students?

      Kirsch, Stephen (2014)
      This research investigates teacher support of extracurricular programs to low-achieving students. Students who participate in extracurricular activities generally benefit from the many opportunities offered to them. Benefits of participation in extracurricular activities include better grades, scoring higher on standardized tests, fewer school absences, learning life skills that are not learned in the classroom, and a feeling of connectedness to their school. This study was designed to determine teachers’ perceptions of extracurricular activities and their advantages, as well as how they encourage or discourage these opportunities to low-achieving students. A survey containing both Likert-scale and free response questions was administered to teachers in a rural middle and high school to analyze the aforementioned research questions.
    • Attitudes and opinions on the current Seneca language revitalization efforts.

      Gautieri, Gina G. (12/11/2013)
      Indigenous languages all over the world, including Native American languages, are being lost at a rapid rate (Baker, 2011). This is often the result of years of suppression and assimilation to the dominant White culture. Therefore, there is a need for heritage language revitalization and maintenance to ensure the languages remain. Today, efforts to revitalize these indigenous languages are ongoing, including those for the Seneca language. Very few studies, however, have focused specifically on these efforts with the Seneca language. The goal of this study was to determine the attitudes and opinions of those learning or involved in the current Seneca language revitalization effort and thus add to the literature on language revitalization. The participants of this study included teachers and students from schools in Western New York near the Cattaraugus Indian Reservation where Seneca language classes are offered. An online Likert-scale survey was used to collect data from teachers, while a paper version of the survey was given to student participants in their Seneca language classes. Results indicated that the current Seneca language revitalization efforts are effective, but may need some improvement to fully revitalize the language. In addition, the Seneca language, culture, and traditions are valued in the schools, but not as much as in the communities outside of the schools. This study may serve as a basis for further research in this area.
    • Attitudes, beliefs, and confidence of speech-language pathologists when working with English Language Learners with communication disorders.

      Caruso, Krista R. (2014)
      Research has shown a self-reported lack of training by Speech-language Pathologists (SLPs) regarding working with English language learners (ELLs) with communication disorders. Along side this lack of training, SLPs are identifying specific problem areas encountered when working with the ELL population, as well as a desire for more training opportunities. This study examined Western New York SLPs attitudes and beliefs regarding the confidence they feel when working with the ELL population, as well as their background knowledge and prior training on specific topics pertinent to ELLs via an online survey. Further, a case study was conducted analyzing the participating SLPs’ practice and identified problem areas encountered with regard to ELLs. Overall, findings identified problem areas self-reported by SLPs that were congruent with the current literature in the field. Largely, findings also indicated that more training in practicum areas that relate to working with the ELL population is desired and important to SLPs. A compiled resource booklet was created for information including best practices and language resources with regard to optimal service delivery in an effort to increase knowledge and confidence when working with the ELL population. Implications and suggestions for further research are discussed with regard to SLPs and their practice when providing service delivery to the ELL population on their caseloads.
    • A beginning teacher's guide to learning with and from games.

      Baetzhold, Matthew (13/11/2013)
      This guide serves as an introduction to the use of games in education. This paper describes and synthesizes valuable learning and motivation concepts and discusses their educational relevance. A case is made that many parallels exist between game design and effective instructional practice. This guide highlights many of the important facets of game design and discusses how such concepts might be applied to educational settings. The guide also provides a few case studies that describe how games have been used in school settings to create positive learning environments that allow students to explore content at much greater depth. Implications for future uses of games in research and practice are outlined.
    • Behavior techniques used in group care settings for aggressive and non-compliant preschoolers.

      Warren, Jennifer L. (28/02/2014)
      There is increasing concern over the number of young children who exhibit challenging behaviors in early childhood settings. The question addressed in this comparative case study is: What classroom management techniques do teachers use with preschool children ages 3 to 4 who exhibit non-compliant and aggressive behavior? A secondary question, was how do teachers narrate the effectiveness of these techniques and their centers’ behavioral management plan in responding to non-compliant and aggressive behavior of young children? This study examined three preschool teachers’ behavior management techniques and practices in controlling non compliant and aggressive child behavior across two different pre-school settings. Three preschool teachers participated in face to face audio recorded interviews. Fifteen questions were asked on a range of topics including: teacher’s behavioral management techniques, school-wide behavior intervention plans, teachers’ narration on the effectiveness of these techniques and their centers’ behavior management plan in responding to non-compliant and aggressive behavior. Responses to each question were transcribed, examined and critiqued for common themes using highlighter coding. The results of this study indicate several commonalties amongst the behavioral techniques teachers used in addressing negative behavior and promoting positive behavior within the classroom and each center’s overall philosophy on responding to challenging behaviors.
    • Best Practice Review.

      Baker, Paul F. (2014)
      Students with Emotional Behavior Disorders (EBD) are being mainstreamed into the classroom at a rapid pace. Administrators are feeling the pressure from the state and national governments to include students with EBD into the inclusive classroom. A Best Practice Review will be carried out to discuss research based Best Practices to use in the classroom. The literature will be reviewed to see if students with EBD can be placed in the inclusive classroom setting and if they can, what types of interventions have been proven effective. The interventions strategies will be discussed in detail so teachers can apply it to their own classroom. Also, research based studies will be discussed that show the effectiveness or lack thereof in each intervention. The Best Practice Interventions that will be discussed include Class-Wide Peer Tutoring, Mystery Motivators, and The Good Behavior Game.
    • Best practices in the English as a second language classroom for adult refugees.

      Nichter, Nicole Elizabeth (30/08/2012)
      With the rising number of refugees in Buffalo, New York, this capstone project proposes an ESL curriculum and the framework for a volunteer-run class that is specifically designed for adult refugees who were recently resettled. refugees need acculturative information and resources in order to be able to thrive in a new society. Since adult refugees often times have to deal with past traumas it is required of teachers of this program to employ cultural competence and culturally responsive pedagogy. This project has taken into consideration innatist, behaviorist, and interactionist perspectives of SLA as well as the theories of B.F. Skinner and behaviorism, Noam Chomsky's Critical period Hypothesis, parameter resetting, and universal grammar. Stephen Krashen's Monitor Model is also closely examined in order to compare and contrast SLA in relation to age. The curriculum presented offers content matter based on our customs to ease student acculturation by using specific methodologies, strategies, an activities such as those found in the SIOP model, community and communicative language learning, and TPR to ensure their funds of knowledge and schema are being activated. this capstone project intends to present a curriculum based on research and theories that propose a class which utilizes best practices in any ESL classroom.
    • Building positive identities in high school newcomers with the 6+1 trait writing model.

      Cavalieri, Birgit (19/10/2012)
      Schools in the United States are faced with an influx of adolescent English language learners (ELLs). To help with positive identity development for ELLs, welcoming environments can support the process of acculturation. Writing can also assist in building an ELL’s identity. The purpose of this project was the creation of a curriculum which will help build cross-cultural identity in ELLs using the 6+1 Trait Writing Model. The impact of cultural differences can be integrated via cross-cultural education in high school using this approach. This curriculum is specifically for newcomer ELLs and uses a multidimensional acculturation model as its framework. It grapples with the challenges the ELLs may face in school and is applied with the 6+1 trait for literacy identity development. The students can express their identities and culture in experience-based comparisons between first language (L1) and second language (L2) cultures in writing.
    • Challenges, benefits, and effective strategies for teaching informational texts in the primary grades.

      Westling, Amanda (11/11/2013)
      The Common Core State Standard (CCSS) Initiative (2011) for English Language Arts places an increased emphasis on teaching informational texts in the primary grades. However, many primary grade teachers may not have the knowledge to teach the informational text genre effectively. In order to address this challenge, the master’s project focuses on the challenges associated with teaching informational texts in the primary grades, the benefits it may present for primary grade students, as well as, effective instructional strategies for teaching informational texts in primary grade classrooms. The findings are presented through a professional development workshop that intends to increase teacher knowledge and enhance informational text instruction in the primary grades.
    • Changing the multilingual ecology in school through the collaboration of English language learners and their parents

      Gifford, Chelsea (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2016-12)
      The purpose of this curriculum project was to improve the Linguistic Landscape (LL) or multilingual ecology (MLE) of West Seneca East Middle School by designing and implementing the Culture Quilt and Tapestry of Hopes projects involving English Language Learners (ELLs) and their families. Despite the considerable large numbers of ELLs in the middle school, there was a substantial shortcoming of multilingual and multicultural presence in the school. To address the lack thereof, the researcher designed two cultural projects to be displayed within the middle school. The Culture Quilt involved the designing of a fabric square, reflective of each family's diverse language and culture. The Tapestry of Hopes involved the completion of a sentence strip by ELL families indicating their hopes and dreams for their child in their Home Language, English, or both. The completion and display of both projects resulted in an overall increase of multilingual ecology in addition to a noticeable excitement and enthusiasm school-wide for celebrating the diversity present within the West Seneca Schools and community. [from author's abstract]
    • The classical civilizations

      Quattrone, Nicholas (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2018-05)
      People of the 21st century are becoming more knowledgeable of how to operate modern-day technology. Whether it is at their place of employment or in the comforts of their home, various technological devices are used daily throughout the world. As the majority of the world becomes increasingly technologically advanced, schools have begun to adapt to the changing world. School districts are incorporating various technological devices into their classrooms to aide in the education of our students. This curriculum project proposes the concept adopting a social studies unit that is exclusively technological. Leading up to the proposed curriculum based on the classical civilizations of the ancient world, readers are exposed to the numerous reasons for implementing a solely technological classroom. Some examples as to why an educator should adopt this concept include increased levels of student engagement, student preparedness for their futures in education and the workplace, as well as an overall better comprehension of the content presented to them. The results of the students' work from this curriculum will be beneficial for future unit scoping and sequencing, as well as the overall cognitive growth of students. [from author's abstract]
    • Classroom environment and literacy engagement.

      McAllister, Kayla J. (19/11/2012)
      The purpose of this descriptive study was to determine whether classroom environment played a role in literacy engagement and motivation. The study investigated whether classroom environment could hinder or promote literacy engagement and in what ways. Data collection included: teacher and student interviews, observational notes, classroom photographs, and the Early Childhood Environmental Rating Scale. The participants included one classroom teacher and three students, one male and two females from her classroom. The teacher chosen was a [twenty] year teacher with a lot of experience and the students chosen included two, four year old females and one, five year old male. [Data] was collected through various ways including: teacher and student interviews, observational notes, classroom photographs, and the Early Childhood Environment Rating Scale. The data [was] then coded for common trends found throughout the duration of the study. Findings from the data support that classroom environment does play a role in literacy engagement and motivation.
    • Classroom management strategies for students with emotional and behavioral disorders

      Torres, Naomi (State University of New York College at Fredonia, 2017-05)
      Department of Language, Learning, and Leadership Elementary students who exhibit behavioral problems often underachieve in all academic subjects, especially in developing their reading skills (Haak, Downer, & Reeve, 2012). This issue of student emotional and behavioral disorders creates a problem of classroom management for teachers. This review and synthesis of the literature to address the question of what are effective classroom management strategies for use with school age students exhibiting emotional and behavior disorders has produced three findings. The first is that research has identified three main types of classroom management strategies that produce positive impact on students with emotional and behavioral disorders: classroom instruction, teacher positive feedback and praise, and student self-monitoring. The second finding is that of the three types of strategies, the classroom instruction and teacher positive feedback and praise increased the time on task and academic performance of these students. Classroom instruction appears to produce positive academic results at the early elementary and late middle school levels, while teacher positive feedback and praise appears to produce results across all grade levels. The third finding is that student self-monitoring appears to be the type of classroom management strategy that decreases negative emotional and behavioral incidents by students with emotional and behavioral disorders across all grade levels. As a result, this strategy type also increases student time on task. These findings are relevant to the professional development of general and special education teachers, and will be dispersed to them through a professional development project in the form of a digital brochure. [from abstract]
    • College level English Language Learners' narrations of their educational experiences learning English.

      Condon, Shauna Michelle (03/01/2013)
      The purpose of this research study was to investigate advanced level English as a second language learners’ perceptions of learning English. The participants were collegiate level international education students from South Korea currently attending a college in New York State. Four advanced level English language learners were interviewed to determine their perceptions of learning English as a second language. The literature that informed the study consists of language learning theory, beneficial practice for teaching English, and pertinent research on education in South Korea. The responses were coded for themes commonly represented in the interviews. The respondents were successful college level advanced English language learners. The findings call in to question the commonly held theory that Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills are easier and more readily acquired than Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency, particularly for this population of Asian college level students educated to be successful in an English language academic setting.