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  1. Making the Most of Read Aloud Time:How to Boost Vocabulary and Comprehension Through Text-Based Discourse Presented by: Lana E. Santoro, Ph.D. Pacific Institutes for Research Alexandria, VA Oregon Reading First Red Lion Hotel Portland Convention Center October 16-17, 2008

  2. Co-Principal Investigators: Scott Baker, Ph.D. Lana Edwards Santoro, Ph.D. David Chard, Ph.D. Hank Fien, Ph.D. Funded by the U.S. Department of EducationInstitute for Education Sciences (CFDA No. 84.305)

  3. What is Comprehension? • Comprehensionis the complex cognitive process involving the intentional interaction between reader and text to extract or construct meaning (National Reading Panel, 2000). Reading comprehension is not an automatic or passive process, but is highly purposeful and interactive – good readers apply a variety of strategies to process text (Honig, Diamond, & Gutlohn, 2000).

  4. Building Comprehension Through Discussion. . . The Comprehension Conversation (Santoro, Baker, Chard, & Howard, 2007)

  5. What the Research Says About Comprehension Strategic reading A reader’s awareness of what strategies are necessary to gain meaning from text and the ability to self-regulate the use of those strategies. Metacognition: The active monitoring of understanding. “Thinking about thinking.” (Coyne, Kame’enui, & Chard, 2003)

  6. Two types of written text: Narrative text tells a story and usually follows a familiar structure. Narrative text may be the invention of an author, the reporting of factual events, or the retelling of a tale from oral tradition. Expository textprovides an explanation of facts and concepts. Its main purpose is to inform, persuade, or explain.

  7. Comprehension Strategies Supported by Research Reader Strategies: • Previewing/Predicting • Making connections • Monitoring and Clarifying • Question generation • Summarization Teacher Strategies: • Question asking/answering • Cooperative learning • Graphic/semantic organizers/story maps National Reading Panel (2000)

  8. Benefits from Reading Aloud • Background knowledge • Vocabulary • Rich language patterns • Text structure • Familiarity with the reading process (Dickinson, Smith, 1994; Fisher, Flood, Lapp, & Frey, 2004; Hickman, Pollard-Durodola, Vaughn, 2004; Justice & Ezell, 2002; Neuman, 1996; Robbins & Ehri, 1994; Santoro, Chard, Baker, & Howard, 2008).

  9. Reading Styles (Dickinson & Smith, 1994) • Co-constructive • Extensive talk during reading, very little before or after • Didactic-interactional • Limited talk • Immediate recall or task organization • Performance orientated • Talk before and after • Any talk during reading was analytic: prediction, vocabulary, personal connectedness, discussion of characters

  10. Performance OrientatedApproach • Reading aloud does not come naturally for many: Practice • Use expression, change tone of voice to match the situation in the story. • Adjust your pace with the story. • Don’t read too fast. • Preview each book. • Plan read aloud time carefully.

  11. The Read Aloud Project

  12. Project Purpose • Feature an approach to read alouds that anchors children’s understanding of stories in narrative and informational text structure and strategic vocabulary instruction. • Facilitate dialogic interactions between the teacher and students. • Promote increased comprehension of text and target vocabulary use.

  13. Instructional Objectives Students will learn about and practice … • Reading as a thinking activity • Preparing to read by identifying text “type” before reading (i.e., why and how to identify narrative or information) • Using a consistent framework--based on text type--to inform what to do/attend to before, during, and after reading (i.e., Story Grammar Elements or KWL) • Monitoring understanding of text (and what to do if text/vocabulary is not clear) • Using text features in information texts

  14. Instructional Objectives (cont) • Recognizing and clarifying important details • Making connections (i.e., text-self; text-text; text-world) with what is read • Using higher level comprehension skills (e.g., prediction, inference) • “Retelling” stories/summarizing information • “Discussing” texts read (individually; in “Book Clubs”) • Using target vocabulary, especially in discussions about text

  15. PROXIMAL *Narrative retell: .38 ES Narrative Comprehension Total *Expository retell: .39 ES Expository Comprehension Total Content Vocabulary (p = .07) DISTAL *Gates Reading Comprehension: .36 ES Gates Listening Comprehension Told Oral Language Results

  16. Vocabulary Outcomes by Condition

  17. Example responses from Depth of Word Knowledge:We couldn’t have made these up… • S A fossil is something when a dinosaur steps on something and they die and a person picks it, the thing up and they see the footprint inside so they put, it in a museum. • E In where? • S A museum. • E Now use the word fossil in a sentence. • S I can't, I don't know anything about it in a sentence. • E What does curious mean? • S It means you don't know. • E Can you say more on that? • S What's a hundred plus a hundred? That's curious. What's a hundred plus a hundred? Hundred plus three hundred is what? I don't know. • E Now use curious in a sentence. • S OK. What's a thousand plus two? {verbal sound for i don't know} • E What does yank mean? • S Like this {sound of chair moving} • E Now use the word nectar in a sentence. • S I'm having nectar. Is that really a sentence? • E What does proud mean? • S Happy like you just swam like a hundred miles. • E Now use chrysalis in a sentence. • S I saw a beautiful chrysalis then I watched it for days and a beautiful butterfly came out. You write fast. • E Not fast enough.

  18. E OK, now use dart in a sentence. • S Hey mom can I play darts? Sure. Bonzai! Don't put that in. I just {laughs} I just wanted to say that. • E OK, what's a paleontologist? • S Paleontologist? I don't know. Oh yes I do. Erase that please. A paleontologist is the person who builds the fossils and they're like a scientist… Want a sentence? • E Just a minute. OK, now use paleontologist in a sentence. • S Hey mom a paleontologist is at my door. Can I answer and let him in to do some science? • E What is a glossary? • S I don't know. • E Can you use it in a sentence? • S Hey mom there's a glossary. What is a glossary anyway? • E What is a paleontologist? • S Someone who studies fossils… I’ve been a paleontologist my whole life…. You’re going to have to write fast to keep up with me. • E What does polite mean? • S Polite means you're being respectful and you're being goody good. • E And now use polite in a sentence. • S That's easy. Watch this Um. I am polite in school. • S Polite is when you ask somebody nicely, like, may I please have my glasses back? • E Now use polite in a sentence. • S Please um give me my glasses back • E What's a paleontologist? • S I have no idea. • E Now use paleontologist in a sentence. • S I still have no idea.

  19. Vocabulary Outcome Differences by Condition and by Student Risk Profile

  20. Narrative Retell Differences by Condition

  21. Pre-test Narrative Retell • S (Um) I forgot the story. • E That's okay. • E Once upon a time • S Once upon a time there was a little boy. • S (um) and a big package. • S And the little boy opened the package. • S and (um) he saw that it was a baby frog. • S and the big frog didn't like the little new frog. • S (And)> • E The baby frog didn't like that there was a baby frog? • S The big frog didn't like there was a baby frog. • S (and the)> • -0:01:24 • E Can you tell me more? • -0:01:26 • S I forgot. • -0:01:30 • E There was a big frog and he didn't like the baby frog. • S (Um he and) the little boy (showed) put the baby frog down (for, um, to, um) to visit (the frog) the big frog. • S and the big frog did not like the baby frog anymore. • S (and um)> Number of Plot Episodes Identified: 4 Plot Episodes 2 Major Components

  22. Post-test Narrative Retell s this is the story about "onefrogtoomany". • s and (um) a little boy got a package. • s and (um) he opened it. • s and then he saw there was a baby frog inside. • s and then (he put um) he was happy he had a baby frog. • s but (the) he already had a big frog already. • s and the big frog was jealous of him. • s and (um) then he put the baby frog down next to the big frog. • s (and then he he um he and then the okay) and then the big frog (um) he said hello in a mean voice. • s and then (um) he bent down and bit the baby frog on the leg. • s and then they went out. • s he sent his pets out to play. • s and he the frogs were on riding the turtle. • s (and the) and the big frog didn't like sharing the ride. • s after a while he kicked the baby frog off. • s and then he left the baby frog there in the dirt or mud. • s and (um he) then they went on a raft. • s well they came to the lake. • s and then they went on a raft. • s and he did something. • s the frog did something. • s I can't remember. • s (and) and the baby frog got kicked off the> • s and by being mean he told him to go home, the frog. • s but well the frog the big frog had to go home. • s but he didn't do it as he was told. • s and (um) the baby frog got pushed. • s (the the um okay) the big frog jumped onto the raft. • s and then he kicked the baby frog off. • s and (then they they after okay) then one of the pets told what happened. • s (and then the said) and then the boy said oh no. • s and then they searched under wooly pads, logs, in logs. • s (and) but they couldn't find the baby frog. • s so they went home all feeling sad. • s even the big frog felt sorry. • s and (um) then they went home. • s and the little boy started to cry. • s but then they heard a s sound. • s and it was sounding like a baby frog. • s {big sigh} then the baby frog {big sigh} jumped in joining them. • s (and then) {big sigh} and then he (um) landed on the big frog's head. • s and then the big frog promised not to hurt the baby frog again. • s and that was all. • - Number of Plot Episodes Identified: 26 Plot Episodes 6 Major Components

  23. Expository Retell Differences by Condition

  24. Pre-test Expository Retell • S They eat fish. • S They eat people and dolphins and other kinds of whales too. • - 0:00:25 • E (Uhhuh). • - 0:00:27 • S I think that's all I know. • - 0:00:32 • E Tell me more about killer whales. • - 0:00:34 • S I don't know anymore. • - 0:00:36 • E (No more)? • - 0:00:42 Number of Concepts Identified: 2 Concepts 0 Spontaneous Vocabulary Use

  25. Post-test Expository Retell • -0:00:00 • S Uh! • S (um) they eat (dolphi*) fish penguins dolphins and other kinds of whales. • S and when they're born they're almost four hundred pounds. • S the male I don't know how long the dorsal fin is. • S but the female has a shorter dorsal fin than the male. • S it helps them steer so they can get around. • S (and when a baby um it weighs) when a baby whale grows up it weighs over a thousand pounds. • S (and mhm) and I forgot. • -0:01:45 • E when they grow up they weigh over a thousand pounds? • E tell me more about killer whales. • -0:02:04 • S they're born under water above the surface. • S when they get teeth they get to eat fish. • S when they're born they're being nursed by their mother. • S (um um) I forgot. • -0:02:41 • E they're nursed by their mothers. • E tell me more. • -0:02:50 • S (mhm) they can swim faster than we can run. • S and I think it's twenty four miles per hour. • S I don't think so. • S but if it's forty two miles per hour that's how old my mom is (mhm). • -0:04:12 • E they swim twenty four miles an hour. • -0:04:14 • S and (um) they don't have gills like fish. • S they don't breathe under water. • S they have a blowhole so they can breathe under water. • S s_s {door slam and lady's laughter drown out student voice}. • S and (um) they can stay under water for ten minutes (or more) or longer (I mean). • S and that's all I learned. • -0:05:04 • E (alright). • -0:05:06 • S Oh why did you have to {breaks off}^ Number of Concepts Identified: 12 Concepts 3 Spontaneous Vocabulary Use

  26. Read Aloud Curriculum Overview

  27. Unit and Lesson Overview • 9 Units (+ a pre Unit) • 20 books total (2 books per unit) • 7 Lessons in each Unit (2 lessons in pre Unit) • 3 lessons with information text • 4 lessons with narrative text • 7 Lessons implemented across 2 weeks • Lessons are designed to take about 20 to 30-minutes

  28. Unit and Lesson Overview • Curriculum is intended to allow for flexibility of implementation • Project Calendar Designed Around the 9 Science/Animal Units • Extension activities are also recommended to enhance the curriculum • Units/Lessons are thematic

  29. Science Units • Unit 1: MAMMALS • Unit 2: Bats • Unit 3: Elephants • * Two weeks per unit (7 lessons) • * 1 Information text and 1 Narrative text per unit

  30. Science Units • Unit 4: REPTILES • Unit 5: Crocodiles • Unit 6: Sea Turtles • * Two weeks per unit (7 lessons) • * 1 Information text and 1 Narrative text per unit

  31. Science Units • Unit 7: INSECTS • Unit 8: Ladybugs • Unit 9: Butterflies • * Two weeks per unit (7 lessons) • * 1 Information text and 1 Narrative text per unit

  32. Instructional time includes. . . • 10-15 minutes of the teacher’s read aloud and strategic use of questions and prompts. • 5-7 minutes of student partner discussion or “Book Clubs.”

  33. Lessons • ALL lessons include before, during, and after components • ALL lessons follow a “repeated reading” model

  34. Before • Identifying the purpose for reading • Information or Storybook • Previewing • Title, author, illustrator • Predicting/Priming • Defining Critical Vocabulary (e.g. if vocabulary word is part of book title)

  35. During • Using consistent framework (e.g., story elements, info. headings, info. text focus questions) • Question-asking strategies • Making connections (Text to text, text to self, text to world) • Making inferences • Self-monitoring: What do you do when you don’t understand something? • Vocabulary

  36. After • Retell of storybooks • Retell of information text (review with KWL chart and tell with information retell sheet) • Vocabulary Introduction, Review and Extension Activities

  37. Organizing Frameworks Information Texts • KWL: • What do we think we know about the topic? • What do we want to know about the topic? • What have we learned about the topic? Narrative Texts • Story Elements/Personal Response • Who is the story about? Main Character/Character Clues and/or Setting • What happened first/next/end? • Did I like/not like the story? Why?

  38. “Repeated Reading” Structure Information Text: • Lesson 1: • Lesson 2: • Lesson 3:

  39. “Repeated Reading” Format: Information Text Lesson1: Prepare to read (preview; id purpose; K & W of KWL Chart) Read 200-300 words (often selected portions of text) Review L of KWL Chart; Start retell practice Lesson 2: Review info/vocab covered in Lesson 1 (with book/chart) Read another 200-300 words Review L of KWL Chart; Continue retell practice Lesson 3: Review info/vocab covered in Lessons 1 & 2 (w book/chart) Read another 200-300 words Review L of KWL Chart; Do complete retell

  40. “Repeated Reading” Structure Narrative Text: • Lesson 4: • Lesson 5: • Lesson 6: • Lesson 7:

  41. “Repeated Reading” Format:Narrative Text Type Lesson4: Prepare to read (preview/id purpose/prime) Read entire story (minimal stops) Start retell practice (personal response) Vocabulary introduction Lessons 5 & 6: Review vocabulary “Discuss” story using retell sheet Retell practice Lesson 7: Review vocabulary Re-read entire story Do a complete retell

  42. How the Curriculum is “Scaffolded” • Pre-Unit • Teach students about Read Aloud routines and materials • Units 1 – 3 • Teacher demonstrates and models strategies • More Think Alouds are used • Explicit instructional support • Units 4 – 6 • Teacher guides and facilitates • Units 7 – 9 • Teacher elicits • Increased use of inferential questions

  43. Model • Lead/Guide • Work collaboratively with students and the strategy, giving and taking as much as necessary to create meaning • Eventually, students take on more and more responsibility • Students use strategies independently (Pardo, 2004)

  44. Selecting Books for Read Alouds

  45. Book Selection Guidelines • Topics • High interest to young children (e.g., animals) • Ability to compare and contrast topics across books • Connected to district, school, and curricular themes • Connected to state and district standards • Target Audience • Grade level students • Interests of students • Length of books

  46. Book Selection Guidelines • Diversity and Multicultural Connections • Male and female characters • Different cultures and ethnicity groups represented • Different settings and geographical locations • Text Coherence • Clear story structure • Expository information presented with clarity and accuracy • Text-to-Text Author and Illustrator Connections • Some books written by the same author • Some books illustrated by the same author

  47. What about colorful and engaging illustrations? • Depends on the purpose of your read aloud. • Building vocabulary, language, and comprehension? • Read first. Then show pictures. • Showing pictures after students have listened to a text excerpt allows them to focus on the text’s language and its meaning without the influence of pictures.

  48. Pairing Story and Information Texts • Using content from information text to expand understanding of story text • Making text-to-text connections • Making thematic connections • Enhancing vocabulary • Building content redundancy and background knowledge

  49. Thinking about the “Fourth Grade Slump” • Reading comprehension requires knowledge – of words and the world (Hirsch, 2003) • Breadth of vocabulary is essential • Domain knowledge is important • Enables readers to make sense of word combinations and choose among multiple possible word meanings • Word knowledge is essential because every text takes for granted the readers’ familiarity with a whole range of unspoken and unwritten facts about the cultural and natural worlds

  50. How Much Information Text is in Primary Grade Classrooms? • Observed first grade classrooms for 1-year in the greater Boston metropolitan area (Duke, 2000) • Results indicated: • Classes spent an average of 3.6 minutes per day with informational text • Classrooms in low SES districts spent even less (1.4 minutes per day) • Scarcity of informational text in primary grade classrooms and materials (Kamberelis, 1998; Moss & Newton, 1998; Yopp & Yopp, 2000)