WWC review of this study

Does an activity-based learning strategy improve preschool children's memory for narrative passages? [Activity-based listening vs. listening to a story]

Biazak, J. E., Marley, S. C., & Levin, J. R. (2010). Early Childhood Research Quarterly, 25(4), 515–526. Retrieved from: https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ902065

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
     examining 
    56
     Students
    , grade
    PK

Reviewed: January 2022

At least one finding shows promising evidence of effectiveness
At least one statistically significant positive finding
Meets WWC standards without reservations
Language outcomes—Statistically significant positive effects found
Outcome
measure
Comparison Period Sample Intervention
mean
Comparison
mean
Significant? Improvement
    index
Evidence
tier

Free recall task: action propositions

Activity-based listening vs. Other intervention

0 Days

Full sample;
56 students

0.13

0.05

Yes

 
 
31
 
More Outcomes

Cued recall: across types

Activity-based listening vs. Other intervention

0 Days

Full sample;
56 students

0.50

0.36

Yes

 
 
24
 

Free recall task: nonaction propositions

Activity-based listening vs. Other intervention

0 Days

Full sample;
56 students

0.05

0.07

No

--

Cued recall: nonaction story detail

Activity-based listening vs. Other intervention

0 Days

Full sample;
56 students

0.54

0.57

No

--
Show Supplemental Findings

Cued recall: typical proposition

Activity-based listening vs. Other intervention

0 Days

Full sample;
56 students

0.62

0.42

--

--

Cued recall: atypical proposition

Activity-based listening vs. Other intervention

0 Days

Full sample;
56 students

0.39

0.31

--

--


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.


  • Female: 46%
    Male: 54%
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    West
  • Race
    Asian
    5%
    Black
    1%
    Native American
    3%
    Other or unknown
    29%
    White
    31%
  • Ethnicity
    Hispanic    
    30%

Setting

The study was conducted in an accredited, university-associated daycare facility in the southwest United States. The study reported 82% of the students were children of university students.

Study sample

No information was provided on the level of economic disadvantage of study participants. The study was performed with children ranging in age from 3 to 5 years; 54% of the sample were male and 46% were female. In addition, the study reported race/ethnicity for the center as a whole. Specifically, the participants were 31.3% White non-Hispanic, 30% Hispanic, 5.3% Asian/Pacific Islander, 3.2% Native American, 1.3% African American, and 28.9% other.

Intervention Group

The intervention condition consisted of an experimental story being read to children, prior to which children were given toys representing the story's characters and objects from the setting. While the story was being read, the children were told to move the toys as described in the story every time they are shown a green sign. The collection of outcome data occurred in one session, held individually with each student. The primary researcher conducted the intervention.

Comparison Group

Children in the comparison group were asked to listen to the story without playing with manipulatives. This was referred to as the "listening strategy". At particular time points in the story, the reader asked children to "think about what was happening in the story" but the manipulatives were covered and they were not instructed to use them. The collection of outcome data occurred in one session, held individually with each student. The primary researcher conducted the listening-only intervention.

Support for implementation

There was no support provided for implementation.

 

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