English vocabulary trajectories of students whose parents speak a language other than English: steep trajectories and sharp summer setback

English vocabulary trajectories of students whose parents speak a language other than English:... In this study, I used individual growth modeling methods to examine the English word-learning trajectories of adolescent students (N = 278) whose parents speak English at home (n = 210) and those whose parents speak a language other than English (n = 68). Sixth- (n = 130) and seventh-grade (n = 148) students attending an urban middle school took part in the study, with each student contributing up to four occasions of vocabulary-achievement data across three school years. I used the group reading and diagnostic evaluation (GRADE), a 40-item, group-administered assessment to measure vocabulary achievement. Students also provided information about the amount of time they spent reading independently during the summer and during the school year. Principal predictor variables included days between assessments, student home language, student free and reduced lunch status, time spent independent reading, and a dummy variable for the number of summers experienced between testing periods. On average, middle-school students experienced a loss of vocabulary over the summer, however students who spoke a language other than English at home had more pronounced summer setback and steeper learning trajectories, even when controlling for well-known predictors of vocabulary like independent reading and predictors of summer loss like free and reduced lunch status. These findings corroborate research showing low-income students experience summer loss, but suggest that in urban schools serving mostly low-income students, home-language status may be a stronger predictor of summer loss than socio-economic status or reading amount. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Reading and Writing Springer Journals

English vocabulary trajectories of students whose parents speak a language other than English: steep trajectories and sharp summer setback

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Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 by Springer Science+Business Media B.V.
Subject
Linguistics; Language and Literature; Psycholinguistics; Education, general; Neurology; Literacy
ISSN
0922-4777
eISSN
1573-0905
D.O.I.
10.1007/s11145-011-9305-z
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

In this study, I used individual growth modeling methods to examine the English word-learning trajectories of adolescent students (N = 278) whose parents speak English at home (n = 210) and those whose parents speak a language other than English (n = 68). Sixth- (n = 130) and seventh-grade (n = 148) students attending an urban middle school took part in the study, with each student contributing up to four occasions of vocabulary-achievement data across three school years. I used the group reading and diagnostic evaluation (GRADE), a 40-item, group-administered assessment to measure vocabulary achievement. Students also provided information about the amount of time they spent reading independently during the summer and during the school year. Principal predictor variables included days between assessments, student home language, student free and reduced lunch status, time spent independent reading, and a dummy variable for the number of summers experienced between testing periods. On average, middle-school students experienced a loss of vocabulary over the summer, however students who spoke a language other than English at home had more pronounced summer setback and steeper learning trajectories, even when controlling for well-known predictors of vocabulary like independent reading and predictors of summer loss like free and reduced lunch status. These findings corroborate research showing low-income students experience summer loss, but suggest that in urban schools serving mostly low-income students, home-language status may be a stronger predictor of summer loss than socio-economic status or reading amount.

Journal

Reading and WritingSpringer Journals

Published: Mar 27, 2011

References

  • Family context and Spanish language use: A study of Latino children in the United States
    Arriagada, P
  • The critical role of vocabulary development for English language learners
    August, D; Carlo, M; Dressler, C; Snow, C

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