Studies have documented the contribution of vocabulary knowledge in second language acquisition and have shown the benefits of repetition, creating context, and the use of multimodal instruction across visual and verbal modalities. This study examined instructional strategies used to teach French vocabulary in an inclusive, prekindergarten foreign language exploratory (FLEX) program using data from observations, videorecordings, and assessments of student learning. Results showed that students of all ability levels were able to learn French vocabulary, although students’ scores varied across the three classrooms. Assessment results were highest in the classroom in which students received the most opportunities for repetition, engagement, and use of language in context where meaning was constructed through a community of practice. Implications of this study highlight the importance of the teacher and student engagement and the role of meaningful input.
This preliminary study examined a prekindergarten multimodal French program conducted for students in an inclusion charter school. Due to the age and varied ability levels of the students, media such as video and songs combined with kinesthetic activities served as the primary instructional approach. Data on children's ability to understand and use simple language were obtained from videorecordings as well as from vocabulary recognition and recall measures. Additional data from teacher questionnaires showed that students of all abilities developed basic communication skills in French and demonstrated enjoyment of the French program.
This study examined a teacher's prompting strategies and the use of dynamic assessment (DA) in an inclusive prekindergarten French program. Prior research has shown that DA is an effective method to assess both foreign language learning and first language development for typically developing students and for students with special needs, as well as for identifying bilingual students with language impairments. Data were collected from videorecordings of class sessions, DA scores, and a questionnaire on which the French teacher reported her classroom prompting strategies and predicted students’ needs for prompting on the DA. Scores on the DA and the French teacher's predictions of student prompting needs were analyzed through independent t tests. In addition, 30 videorecordings of class sessions were analyzed for prompting strategies. The results indicated that DA can provide insights about the learning of typically developing students and special needs students in a prekindergarten French program. Although students with special needs required both more prompting and more practice time than typically developing students, all special needs students in this study were able to provide at least one second language response during the DA.
This study examines a classroom simulation workshop designed for teacher candidates (TCs) to practice questioning strategies with English learners (ELs) at various English proficiency levels, through the lens of sociocultural theory. Data was collected from an assignment in an ESOL methods course consisting of questions that TCs prepared before the simulation, revised after the simulation, and responses to an open-ended questionnaire. Findings show that TCs made their questions comprehensible for beginner level ELs, however, overextended their question modification to both the intermediate and advanced levels. Implications highlight the importance of practicing questioning strategies that are appropriate for all proficiency levels.
The purpose of this chapter is to provide guidelines to education college and university faculty members who are considering the implementation of an international service-learning experience for their teacher candidates. The chapter begins with a review of literature supporting the benefits of service-learning for teacher candidates. Next is a description of a service-learning trip to Costa Rica planned and implemented by an education faculty member in conjunction with a cultural diversity course designed to prepare candidates to meet the needs of English Learners (ELs). Following the description of the Costa Rica service-learning trip, the author provides guidelines and a list of questions for consideration. The guidelines are designed to assist faculty members who are considering implementing a similar service-learning experience for their teacher candidates. Finally, the chapter concludes with quotations provided by participants of the Costa Rica service-learning experience that show the overall benefits of the service-learning experience.
This longitudinal quantitative study examines the first and second language vocabulary development of prekindergarten students enrolled in an inclusive foreign language exploratory (FLEX) program. The FLEX program, framed by the Cognitive Retroactive Hypothesis of cross‐linguistic transfer, is situated in a context where students with special needs are fully included in all academic activities. Data were collected over 2 years from 60 students in the form of standardized tests and classroom tests of first and second language vocabulary. Results indicate that all students showed evidence of learning second language vocabulary, although students with special needs scored lower than their peers. Furthermore, all participants showed evidence of first language vocabulary increases contradicting assumptions that foreign language exposure may cause interference with the first language for special needs students. Implications include discussion of the least restrictive environment for students with special needs by questioning deficiency‐centered decisions about foreign language exemptions.
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