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Translating the Evidence: Creating Professional Development from an IES Practice Guide Russell Gersten, PhD Director of Research, REL–SW Professor Emeritus,

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Presentation on theme: "Translating the Evidence: Creating Professional Development from an IES Practice Guide Russell Gersten, PhD Director of Research, REL–SW Professor Emeritus,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Translating the Evidence: Creating Professional Development from an IES Practice Guide Russell Gersten, PhD Director of Research, REL–SW Professor Emeritus, University of Oregon Presented at IES REL Meeting February 7, 2008

2 Website Information For the full Practice Guide: 5/TopicLevel/el_practice_guide.pdf For the Doing What Works website:

3 Themes for this Session 1. Search for Concreteness: Craving for Concreteness 2. Mixing Conceptual Knowledge with Procedural Knowledge Teacher study Groups as a means of professional development 3. Identifying and Tackling Roadblocks

4 What is the goal of a Practice Guide? Consider all available evidence Clearly identify level of evidence Formulate specific guidelines that will be useful to school districts Formulate a Plan of Action for teachers, administrators, coaches, curriculum specialists Not a rehash of conventional wisdom

5 Panelists Russell Gersten (Chair) Robin Scarcella Timothy Shanahan Penny Collins (formerly Chiappe) Scott K. Baker Sylvia Linan Thompson

6 The Topics 1. Early screening and identification/ Progress monitoring 2. Early Intervention 3. Vocabulary 4. Academic English 5. Peer assisted learning

7 Theme 1: Search for Concreteness Panel struggles to develop 5 to 10 assertions that are: Clear Forceful and useful And COHERENT That do not encompass all things for all people read like a book chapter or article

8 R ecommendation 1: Early Screening using English Language Measures Level of Evidence: Strong Twenty-two studies have demonstrated that three types of measures are valid means of determining which English learners are likely to benefit from typical classroom reading instruction and which children will require extra support: Measures of phonological awareness Measures of familiarity with the alphabet, and the alphabetic principle in English Word reading for grade 1only

9 Recommendation 1(Actions): Screening & Progress Monitoring Level of Evidence: Strong Conduct screening assessments in kindergarten and first grade using English language measures of phonological processing, letter knowledge, and word reading to identify English learners who require additional instructional support. Monitor progress using measures of word reading, pseudoword reading and connected text in grades 1-4.

10 Suggestions: Progress Monitoring Districts should establish policies and training for schools to monitor the reading progress of all students, including English Learners, at least three times per year. These measures will be valid predictors of scores on state assessments or nationally normed tests. There are values to progress monitoring in the language of reading instruction but also being aware of how students fare against English language benchmarks.

11 Recommendation 4: Develop Academic English Level of Evidence: Low Based on two intervention studies, on one correlational study, and on expert judgment. English learners require considerable explicit and deliberate instruction to learn academic English.

12 Suggestions English learners must have a daily block of time devoted to development of academic English. Daily academic English instruction should also be integrated into the core curriculum. Teach academic English in the earliest grades. Provide teachers with appropriate professional development.

13 Recommendation5: Regular Peer-assisted Learning Opportunities Level of Evidence: Strong Based on three high-quality experiments and quasi-experiments All of these studies demonstrated positive impacts on reading achievement for students at varying ability levels

14 Suggestions Ensure that teachers of English learners devote at least two hours a week to instructional activities where pairs of students at different ability levels and/or different English language proficiencies work together on academic tasks in a structured fashion. These activities should provide practice and extension to material already taught.

15 Theme 2: Mixing Conceptual Knowledge with Procedural Knowledge Examples of the Conceptual & Procedural Mix An example from screening section Use of Teacher study Groups as a means to accomplish this mix

16 R ecommendation 1: Early Screening using English Language Measures Level of Evidence: Strong Twenty-two studies have demonstrated that three types of measures are valid means of determining which English learners are likely to benefit from typical classroom reading instruction and which children will require extra support: Measures of phonological awareness Measures of familiarity with the alphabet, and the alphabetic principle in English Word reading for grade 1only

17 Recommendation 1: Early Screening Fights conventional wisdom of wait until child is proficient in English No need to wait until students have good oral proficiency in English before teaching reading No need to wait until students are proficient in English before screening for students who may need extra support Recent research (Lesaux, Journal of Educational Psychology, November 2007) shows still valid for fourth grade reading

18 What are Teacher Study Groups? A form of professional development that: Is truly professional (uses readings from research and professional dialogue) Brings coherence to Reading First activities that the District and State provide Links research principles to teachers own classroom Provides state of the art information on applying research to English Learners

19 Suggestions for a Teacher Study Group Use next weeks unit in core reading series as a base Select words that are crucial for understanding the content (paired activity) Locate words in Teachers Edition that are not essential Generate student friendly definitions Generate examples and non-examples to use

20 Teacher Study Groups Session Design (75 Minutes) 1. Debrief Previous Application of Research 2. Walk Through the Research 3. Walk Through the Lesson 4. Collaborative Planning 5. Assignment

21 Teacher Study Groups Vocabulary Scope and Sequence Student Friendly Definitions Examples Non-examples/Contrasting Examples Choosing Words to Teach: Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 Words Activities to Promote Multiple Meaningful Exposures Tradebook Lesson Enriching the Verbal Environment

22 Activities for Non Examples and Examples: Rich, deep vocabulary instruction 1. Would it be strange to see an elephant on the playground? Why? Why not? 2. Would a hermit go to a birthday party? Why? Why not? 3. If I give an example of something that is enormous, say, Enormous. (Beck, McKeown, Kucan, 2002)

23 Examples of Identified Roadblocks Recommendation 1 – Early Screening for RD using English Language Measures Recommendation 4 – Develop Academic Language

24 Roadblocks: Early screening in English Some teachers think that: Reading problems may resolve themselves once English learners develop proficiency in oral English. It is unfair to test a child in a language that she or he does not understand. Native language assessments are more valid than English language measures for this group of students. Fine to do both. It is inappropriate to teach phonological processing skills in a language that a child does not fully understand.

25 Roadblocks: Academic English Some educators may cushion their English learners, believing that: academic English is too hard for them to develop expectations are too demanding Not enough time to provide sufficient instruction Teachers fail to link vocabulary instruction to instruction on proper language usage.

26 Questions and on to Doing What Works


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