Literate Language Intervention With High-Need Prekindergarten Children: A Randomized Trial Purpose The present article reports on the implementation and results of a randomized intervention trial targeting the literate language skills of prekindergarten children without identified language disorders but with low oral language skills. Method Children (N = 82; 45 boys and 37 girls) were screened-in and randomized to ... Research Article
Research Article  |   December 01, 2016
Literate Language Intervention With High-Need Prekindergarten Children: A Randomized Trial
 
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Beth M. Phillips
    Florida State University, Tallahassee
  • Galiya Tabulda
    Florida State University, Tallahassee
  • Smriti A. Ingrole
    Florida State University, Tallahassee
  • Pam Webb Burris
    Florida State University, Tallahassee
  • T. Kayla Sedgwick
    Florida State University, Tallahassee
  • Shiyi Chen
    Florida State University, Tallahassee
  • 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 Beth M. Phillips: bphillips@fcrr.org
  • Editor: Rhea Paul
    Editor: Rhea Paul×
  • Associate Editor: Shelley Gray
    Associate Editor: Shelley Gray×
Article Information
Development / School-Based Settings / Research Issues, Methods & Evidence-Based Practice / Language Disorders / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Language / Research Articles
Research Article   |   December 01, 2016
Literate Language Intervention With High-Need Prekindergarten Children: A Randomized Trial
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2016, Vol. 59, 1409-1420. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-L-15-0155
History: Received April 30, 2015 , Revised September 29, 2015 , Accepted March 24, 2016
 
Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, December 2016, Vol. 59, 1409-1420. doi:10.1044/2016_JSLHR-L-15-0155
History: Received April 30, 2015; Revised September 29, 2015; Accepted March 24, 2016

Purpose The present article reports on the implementation and results of a randomized intervention trial targeting the literate language skills of prekindergarten children without identified language disorders but with low oral language skills.

Method Children (N = 82; 45 boys and 37 girls) were screened-in and randomized to a business-as-usual control or to the pull-out treatment groups in which they received 4 instructional units addressing different sentence-level syntactic and semantic features: prepositions, conjunctions, adverbs, and negations. The intervention was delivered by paraprofessionals in small groups in the form of 20-min lessons 4 times a week for 12 weeks.

Results Overall, children receiving the supplemental instruction showed educationally meaningful gains in their oral language skills, relative to children in the control group. Significant group differences were found on researcher-designed oral language measures, with moderate to large effect sizes ranging from .44 to .88 on these measures.

Conclusions The intervention holds the potential to positively affect understanding and production of syntax and semantic features, such as prepositions and conjunctions, in young children with weak oral language skills.

Acknowledgments
This research was supported by Institute of Education Sciences, US Department of Education Washington, DC (Grant R305F100027) to C. J. Lonigan (Principal Investigator) and colleagues, including the first author. The views herein are those of the authors and have neither been reviewed or approved by the funding agency.
We express appreciation to Karli Willis, Melanie Fitzpatrick, Kelly Shepherd, Felesa Oliver, and Jennifer Ebener for their contributions to the design of the intervention and assessments.
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