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ERIC Number: ED514214
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 148
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1096-8751-4
Applied Linguistics and Language Acquisition in the Elementary Education Setting
Napier Boyer, Pamela
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Union Institute and University
The purpose of this research was to ascertain if the reading comprehension skills of English-speaking fifth grade students improve when they study a second language. The research was done in an inner-city elementary school in Rochester, New York. The researcher provided a weekly after-school workshop in foreign languages for a group of children aged 10 and 11. The goal was to introduce second language as a viable part of the core curriculum at the elementary school level, creating a prototype for an educational model. The impact of the language workshop was measured by assessing whether vocabulary and reading scores improved on standardized language arts exams administered at the end of the year. A second component was to assess through qualitative evaluation whether language learning could be used as a motivational tool. Students were exposed to French, Italian, Spanish, and Japanese. Educational methodologies focused on vocabulary building, comprehension of sentence structure, and cultural and metalinguistic awareness. Upon completion, questions were raised with students that focused on the manner in which they define themselves as learners, their desire to learn, and the general effect study of a second language has on commitment to lifelong learning. A mixed method approach of quantitative and qualitative evaluation was used based on the hypothesis that second language study for English-speaking students would affect reading test scores. The quantitative assessment of the data indicated no significant differences in standardized test scores between those who participated and those who did not participate in the second language education program, although several students in the test group showed marked improvement. Students who participated in the program had a significant increase in motivation to learn as measured qualitatively using interviews and field notes. The literature component proved to be an important part of the research. The intensity of student interest in further study indicated positive long range effects that support the deductive format used. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 5
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New York