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In a scientifically-based research study, classrooms that used the Discussions4Learning curriculum demonstrated significant, statistical gains in the following areas:
- Overall vocabulary knowledge
- Retention of academically challenging vocabulary
- Ability to use context clues to decipher meaning of unknown words
- Listening comprehension of both fiction and nonfiction texts
Helping English Learners Build Academic Language
Alfredo Schifini, Ph.D., leading expert in oral language and effective instructional approaches for English language learners, discusses the value of oral language, and specific strategies to support English learners.
Accountable Talk Equals Better Language Skills
Elena Zaretsky, Ph.D., a leading expert in language development, shares her research using Discussions4Learning with low-proficiency English language learners. She demonstrates the significant increase in oral academic language and the ability to construct a meaningful narrative after 15 weeks of using Discussions4Learning with students in Grades 1–3 as compared to a control group of high-performing English language learners. After 15 weeks, the low-performing English language learners’ narratives equaled or exceeded those of the high-performing English language learners.
Importance of Oral Language Vocabulary Development in Improving Academic Outcomes for English Language Learners
Elena Zaretsky, Ph.D., a leading expert in language development, shares her research using Discussions4Learning (D4L) with English language learners from low Socioeconomic status (SES) attending an urban Title I school. This study illustrates the lasting impact 25 weeks of exposure to D4L had on the retention of Tier II vocabulary by 1st grade English language learners. As seen from the results, children exposed to D4L were able to retain high-level academic vocabulary words learned at the onset of the program when tested at the end of the school year.