The Workshop on the Role of Language in School Learning: Implications for Closing the Achievement Gap was held to explore three questions: What is known about the conditions that affect language development? What are the effects of early language development on school achievement? What instructional approaches help students meet school demands for language and reading comprehension? Of particular interest was the degree to which group differences in school achievement might be attributed to language differences, and whether language-related instruction might help to close gaps in achievement by helping students cope with language-intensive subject matter especially after the 3rd grade.
The workshop provided a forum for researchers and practitioners to review and discuss relevant research findings from varied perspectives. The disciplines and professions represented included: language development, child development, cognitive psychology, linguistics, reading, educationally disadvantaged student populations, literacy in content areas (math, science, social studies), and teacher education. The aim of the meeting was not to reach consensus or provide recommendations, but rather to offer expert insight into the issues that surround the study of language, academic learning, and achievement gaps, and to gather varied viewpoints on what available research findings might imply for future research and practice. This book summarizes and synthesizes two days of workshop presentations and discussion.
Table of Contents
|2 Vocabulary and Beyond: Developing Language for School Achievement||7-26|
|3 Supporting Preschool Language for School Learning||27-48|
|4 Learning Across Languages: Second-Language Learners and Dialect Speakers||49-68|
|5 Language Differences||69-82|
|6 Reflections on Research and Practice||83-90|
|Appendix A: Workshop Agenda||97-102|
|Appendix B: Biographical Sketches of Planning Committee Members and Staff||103-106|
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