A Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Vocabulary Approach for Young Latino Dual Language Learners Purpose This study examined the role of the language of vocabulary instruction in promoting English vocabulary in preschool Latino dual language learners (DLLs). The authors compared the effectiveness of delivering a single evidence-informed vocabulary approach using English as the language of vocabulary instruction (English culturally responsive [ECR]) versus using a ... Research Article
Research Article  |   February 01, 2015
A Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Vocabulary Approach for Young Latino Dual Language Learners
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Lucía I. Méndez
    East Carolina University, Greenville, NC
  • Elizabeth R. Crais
    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Dina C. Castro
    University of North Texas, Denton
  • Kirsten Kainz
    Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  • Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.
    Disclosure: The authors have declared that no competing interests existed at the time of publication.×
  • Correspondence to Lucía I. Méndez: mendezl@ecu.edu
  • Editor: Rhea Paul
    Editor: Rhea Paul×
  • Associate Editor: M. Adelaida Restrepo
    Associate Editor: M. Adelaida Restrepo×
Article Information
Development / Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / School-Based Settings / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   February 01, 2015
A Culturally and Linguistically Responsive Vocabulary Approach for Young Latino Dual Language Learners
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2015, Vol. 58, 93-106. doi:10.1044/2014_JSLHR-L-12-0221
History: Received July 9, 2012 , Revised April 17, 2013 , Accepted October 13, 2014
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, February 2015, Vol. 58, 93-106. doi:10.1044/2014_JSLHR-L-12-0221
History: Received July 9, 2012; Revised April 17, 2013; Accepted October 13, 2014
Web of Science® Times Cited: 3

Purpose This study examined the role of the language of vocabulary instruction in promoting English vocabulary in preschool Latino dual language learners (DLLs). The authors compared the effectiveness of delivering a single evidence-informed vocabulary approach using English as the language of vocabulary instruction (English culturally responsive [ECR]) versus using a bilingual modality that strategically combined Spanish and English (culturally and linguistically responsive [CLR]).

Method Forty-two DLL Spanish-speaking preschoolers were randomly assigned to the ECR group (n = 22) or CLR group (n = 20). Thirty English words were presented during small-group shared readings in their preschools 3 times a week for 5 weeks. Multilevel models were used to examine group differences in postinstruction scores on 2 Spanish and 2 English vocabulary assessments at instruction end and follow-up.

Results Children receiving instruction in the CLR bilingual modality had significantly higher posttest scores (than those receiving the ECR English-only instruction) on Spanish and English vocabulary assessments at instruction end and on the Spanish vocabulary assessment at follow-up, even after controlling for preinstruction scores.

Conclusions The results provide additional evidence of the benefits of strategically combining the first and second language to promote English and Spanish vocabulary development in this population. Future directions for research and clinical applications are discussed.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by Head Start Research Scholar Grant 90YR005001, awarded to the first author from the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. We appreciate the generous Head Start support and thank the children and staff of the Head Start preschool sites who made this study possible. We also thank the anonymous reviewers for their many helpful suggestions that improved both the content and the presentation of this article.
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