WWC review of this study

ELL preschoolers’ English vocabulary acquisition from storybook reading [Rich explanation reading vs. business as usual (story reading without rich explanation)]

Collins, M. F. (2010). Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 25(1), 84–97. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ864528

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
     examining 
    69
     Students
    , grade
    PK

Reviewed: June 2022

At least one finding shows promising evidence of effectiveness
At least one statistically significant positive finding
Meets WWC standards with reservations
Language outcomes—Statistically significant positive effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Target Vocabulary Test (Collins 2010)

Rich explanation reading vs. Intervention

0 Days

Full sample ;
69 students

26.50

18.12

Yes

 
 
39
 


Evidence Tier rating based solely on this study. This intervention may achieve a higher tier when combined with the full body of evidence.

Characteristics of study sample as reported by study author.


  • 100% English language learners

  • Female: 50%
    Male: 50%
    • B
    • A
    • C
    • D
    • E
    • F
    • G
    • I
    • H
    • J
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    • V
    • U
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    • W
    • X
    • Z
    • Y
    • a
    • h
    • i
    • b
    • d
    • e
    • f
    • c
    • g
    • j
    • k
    • l
    • m
    • n
    • o
    • p
    • q
    • r
    • s
    • t
    • u
    • x
    • w
    • y

    Northeast
  • Race
    Black
    4%
    White
    96%

Setting

The study took place in six preschool classrooms in two public schools within two school districts in the northeastern United States. One school was an elementary school and the other only included prekindergarten classrooms. The public schools served middle- to low-income families.

Study sample

Ninety-six percent of the sample were White and 4 percent were Black. About 80 percent were eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. Children were from Portuguese-speaking families.

Intervention Group

Groups of 2–3 children were read to by the researcher in a room outside of their classroom. Each child heard the researcher read 2 books once weekly over a 3-week period (a total of 3 times). The researcher used 4 pairs of books across the children in the sample. The researcher chose 5–9 target vocabulary words to insert into each book. In the intervention condition, the researcher provided rich explanations of the target words. Rich explanations include pointing to the illustration of the target word, providing a general definition of the word, providing a synonym, making a gesture of the word, and using the word in a different context than in the book.

Comparison Group

Groups of 2–3 children were read to by the researcher in a room outside of their classroom. Each child heard the researcher read 2 books once weekly over a 3-week period (a total of 3 times). The researcher used 4 pairs of books across the children in the sample. In the comparison condition, the researcher read the books with the target words but did not provide rich explanations of the target words. The researcher used the same four books when reading to the comparison group students.

Support for implementation

The author implemented both conditions, so did not require external support. Therefore, no support for implementation was described in the article.

 

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