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Adaptations are Key to Early Literacy Learning Carol M. Trivette, Ph.D. Orelena Hawks Puckett Institute Asheville and Morganton, NC Presentation made at.

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Presentation on theme: "Adaptations are Key to Early Literacy Learning Carol M. Trivette, Ph.D. Orelena Hawks Puckett Institute Asheville and Morganton, NC Presentation made at."— Presentation transcript:

1 Adaptations are Key to Early Literacy Learning Carol M. Trivette, Ph.D. Orelena Hawks Puckett Institute Asheville and Morganton, NC Presentation made at the Ninth National Early Childhood Inclusion Institute Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute Chapel Hill, NC July 15, 2009

2 Purpose of Presentation To describe the : CELL content model Development of evidence-based practice guides Process and procedures for identifying evidence-based adaptations Development of practice guides with adaptations

3 The Center for Early Literacy Learning Orelena Hawks Puckett Institute Asheville & Morganton, NC American Institutes for Research Washington, DC PACER Center Bloomington, MN UCONN Center for Excellence in Disabilities Farmington, CT (CELL) is a collaboration among the:

4 CELL website: What you’ll find there: –CELLpapers provide background information about the conceptual frameworks used to guide CELL activities and the results of evaluation and research studies conducted by CELL staff.CELLpapers –CELLreviews are practice-based research syntheses of early communication, language, and literacy development.CELLreviews –CELLnotes are one- to two-page summaries of the findings from practice-based research syntheses.CELLnotes –CELLpractices include descriptions of the methods, steps, or procedures for promoting adoption and use of evidence-based literacy learning practices by practitioners, parents, and other caregivers.CELLpractices

5 Domains of Early Literacy Learning Speech Processing Skills  Oral Language  Listening Comprehension  Phonological Awareness Print-Related Skills  Print Awareness  Written Language  Alphabet Awareness  Text Comprehension Adapted from A. van Kleeck (1998). Pre-literacy domains and stages. Journal of Children’s Communication Development, 20, 33-51. a a

6 Oral Language

7 Listening Comprehension

8 Phonological Awareness

9 Print Awareness

10 Written Language

11 Alphabet Awareness

12 Text Comprehension

13 Operationalization Conduct practice-based research syntheses of early literacy learning experiences and practices Develop evidence-based practice guides using findings from the research syntheses to inform the content of the practices

14 Everyday Literacy Activities Responsive Teaching Early Literacy Learning Outcomes Overview of CELL Early Literacy Learning Model Literacy-Rich Environments Child Interests

15 Interest-Based Mastery Cycle Mastery Interests Engagement Competence Literacy Activities




19 Evidence-Based Practice Guides What is the practice? What does the practice look like? How do you do the practice? How do you know the practice worked? CELL practices (paper, DVDs, PPP, etc.) are prepared in a manner that provides end-users (practitioners and parents) information about four elements of a practice:

20 CELL Practice Guides All CELL practice guides include the four “how to” elements and “real life” examples of the practices being implemented by practitioners or parents. At least one vignette includes descriptions of how the practice can be modified or adapted for a child with a disability.

21 Practice Guide Vignettes Two – three vignettes on the back of each practice guide Vignettes explicitly or implicitly build on the interest of the child Activities in the vignette are naturally occurring as part of everyday life Vignettes suggest how parents or practitioners interact in a responsive manner

22 Practice Guide Hierarchy Universal Practice Guides Practice Guides with Adaptations Specialized Practice Guides



25 Examples of Practice Guides by Early Literacy Domains Linguistic Processing Skills Oral Language –Babble On –Talk Is Fun Listening Comprehension –Time to Rhyme – Hear This Phonological Awareness –Fingerplays and Action Rhymes –Sound Advice Print - Related Skills Print Awareness –One for the Books –First ABC Books Written Language –Scribble Scribble –Get Write on It! Alphabet Awareness –Stamps of Approval –Exploring Magazines and Catalogs Text Comprehension –Read It Again! –Tuning Into Tales

26 Practice Guide with Adaptations for Encouraging Child Participation Adaptations ensure that children with disabilities: –Can express their interests and have them interpreted correctly –Can engage in early literacy learning activities –Can become skillful and competent in early literacy activities and behaviors –Can master early literacy learning skills Adaptations offer just enough assistance so that children with disabilities can proceed through the same process of mastery as do children without disabilities.

27 Adaptation Continuum Adapt Environment Adapt Activity Adapt Materials Adapt Instruction Provide Assistance Source: Cara’s Kit, Milbourne & Campbell, 2007

28 Adaptations Adaptations include adjustments, changes, or modifications to the environment, activities, materials, or interactions that support or enhance children’s participation in everyday early literacy learning activities.

29 Environmental Adaptations Changes or modifications to the physical environment or the addition of selected equipment. Examples Rearrange furniture for easy wheelchair access to the book shelf Make a quiet place to support a child who is trying to focus on his/her favorite book Provide a child a slant board when he/she is coloring





34 Adaptations to Activities Changes or modifications to the learning activity to enhance the child’s participation. Examples Let the child use his finger to paint instead of using a paint brush that is hard for him to hold Let the child use finger puppets as part of telling a story Tape paper to the table to provide more stability while the child is coloring Let a restless child pick a book she likes to read even if it is in the middle of another story





39 Adaptations to Materials Changes or modifications to the materials used in an activity to enhance children’s participation. Examples Use foam to thicken pencils to make them easier to hold Provide visual cues on a recipe so the child can follow the steps even if she cannot “read” Provide a switch interface so the child can turn a tape recorder on and off to listen to songs or stories Place knobs on an alphabetical puzzle to help a child place the pieces in or out











50 Instructional Adaptations Changes or modifications to the instructions or requirements of the activity to support the child’s participation. Examples Shorten the length of time a child participates in drawing so he doesn’t lose interest Allow a child to stand instead of sit while listening to a story Allow a child to use a picture board to answer questions about the story Provide extra time for a child with some mild fine motor challenges to finish “writing” her name




54 Providing Assistance Adult provides the child direct assistance to accomplish the activity. Examples Adult guides the child’s hand when drawing a picture Adult takes the does the action for the child




58 Practice-Based Research Syntheses A practice-based research synthesis attempts to identify, unpack, and disentangle those characteristics of environmental experiences (practices, interventions, treatments, etc.) that have development-enhancing features and elements.

59 Framework for Conducting a Practice-Based Research Synthesis Practice Characteristics Practice Consequences Processes

60 Disentangling and Unpacking the Characteristics that Matter Most As many practice characteristics as possible of an intervention in a study are coded and analyzed, and the presence and absence of the characteristics are related to the study outcomes to identify those characteristics that “stand out” as most important.

61 Adaptation Synthesis Reviewed 19 articles that examined the effects of adaptations on child learning 104 participants ranging in age between 50 and 80 months with majority being 36 to 60 months of age 86% were boys Wide range of disabilities including autism, cerebral palsy, visual impairments, etc.

62 Number of Articles that Examined Adaptations 3 Studies Environmental Adaptations 12 Studies Activity Adaptations 3 Studies Material Adaptations 9 Studies in Classrooms 5 Studies in homes 2 Studies in Clinics 1 Study on Playground

63 Mean Cohen’s d Effect Sizes and 90% Confidence Intervals (CI) for Type of Adaptation Number VariableChildren Effect Sizes Mean d90% CI Environment6102.27.86 - 3.68 Activity23301.861.38 - 2.34 Material681.39.41 - 2.36

64 Mean Cohen’s d Effect Sizes and 90% Confidence Intervals (CI) for Outcome Variables Number VariableChildren Effect Sizes Mean d90% CI Cognitive993.422.53 - 4.31 Communication21281.571.10 - 2.04 Gross Motor223.52-.28 - 7.31 Social69.88-.29 - 2.04

65 Mean Cohen’s d Effect Sizes and 90% Confidence Intervals (CI) for Child Disabilities Number VariableChildren Effect Sizes Mean d90% CI Autism17212.361.69 – 3.02 Multiple Disabilities8102.101.07 – 3.12 Developmental Delay561.42.62 – 2.21 Cerebral Palsy481.17-.22 – 2.55 Behavioral Disorder13.46-.21 – 1.14

66 Synthesis Summary All three adaptations were related to changes in child behavior Communication and cognitive outcome most effected by adaptations Adaptations most effective when used in 10 or more sessions Adaptations effective for children with autism, multiple disabilities, and developmental delays

67 Infant Practice Guides Show Me the Funny (Stories and Listening) Picture This (Gestures and Signing) Mark My Word (Scribbling and Drawing) Let Me Show You What I Mean (Vocalizing and Listening) Turn Up the Sound (Rhymes and Sound Awareness)

68 Toddler Practice Guides Speaking Without Words (Talking and Listening) Book Reading made Fun for All (Storytelling and Listening) Look Who’s Talking (Rhymes and Sound Awareness) That Sign Means ‘Stop’ (Symbols and Letters) All...Write (Scribbling and Drawing)

69 Preschool Practice Guides I See Signs (Symbols and Letters) Write On (Drawing and Writing) It’s Story Time (Book Reading and Storytelling) Sounds Good to Me (Rhymes and Sound Awareness) Talk to Me (Talking and Listening)

70 Toddler Practice Guide


72 All…Write Vignette

73 Preschool Practice Guide


75 Reviewers Comments Particularly liked the vignettes – they would make families feel like these activities were very “doable” Suggestions concerning “How do you know the practice works” with children with specific disabilities Made recommendations about different types of adaptations – for example texture books

76 Next Steps Compile feedback from experts and make modifications to the Practice Guides with Adaptations Gather feedback from parents and practitioners on these modified Practice Guides with Adaptations Make final modifications to Practice Guides with Adaptations based on feedback from parents and practitioners Develop Specialized Practice Guides

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