ERIC Number: ED353355
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992
Reference Count: N/A
Academic Challenge for the Children of Poverty. Study of Academic Instruction for Disadvantaged Students. Summary Report.
Knapp, Michael S.; And Others
This publication summarizes the findings of a 3-year study concerning the effectiveness of instruction that emphasizes meaning and understanding. In particular, the instructional approaches embedded the teaching of discrete skills in context and drew connections between academic learning and students' home lives. These strategies were applied in mathematics, reading, and writing instruction in 140 classrooms across 15 schools serving low-income students. The findings indicate that teachers most engaged in alternative practices were likely to have orderly classrooms in which various types of activities and interactions among students and teachers were encouraged. The use of standardized tests, writing samples, and tests of problem-solving proficiency produced evidence concerning the effects of these instructional practices on advanced skills and basic skills. Students exposed to instruction emphasizing meaning and understanding performed better on tests for advanced academic skills than did students not exposed to this type of instruction, even after initial differences in student achievement and poverty level were taken into consideration. The results also show that the proposed instructional strategies facilitate the mastery of basic skills or at least do not impede their mastery. Seventeen exhibits illustrate the findings. (JB)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Basic Skills, Children, Curriculum Evaluation, Disadvantaged Youth, Economically Disadvantaged, Educational Environment, Elementary Education, Elementary School Students, Instructional Effectiveness, Instructional Innovation, Low Income Groups, Supplementary Education, Teacher Attitudes, Teaching Methods, Thinking Skills
U.S. Department of Education, Office of Policy and Planning (Planning and Evaluation Service), Room 3127, 400 Maryland Ave., S.W., Washington, DC 20202.
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Policy and Planning (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: SRI International, Menlo Park, CA.; Policy Studies Associates, Inc., Washington, DC.