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ERIC Number: EJ1035428
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jan
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0161-1461
Longitudinal Analysis of Receptive Vocabulary Growth in Young Spanish English-Speaking Children from Migrant Families
Jackson, Carla Wood; Schatschneider, Christopher; Leacox, Lindsey
Language, Speech, and Hearing Services in Schools, v45 n1 p40-51 Jan 2014
Purpose: The authors of this study described developmental trajectories and predicted kindergarten performance of Spanish and English receptive vocabulary acquisition of young Latino/a English language learners (ELLs) from socioeconomically disadvantaged migrant families. In addition, the authors examined the extent to which gender and individual initial performance in Spanish predict receptive vocabulary performance and growth rate. Method: The authors used hierarchical linear modeling of 64 children's receptive vocabulary performance to generate growth trajectories, predict performance at school entry, and examine potential predictors of rate of growth. The timing of testing varied across children. The ELLs (prekindergarten to 2nd grade) participated in 2-5 testing sessions, each 6-12 months apart. Results: The ELLs' average predicted standard score on an English receptive vocabulary at kindergarten was nearly 2 "SD"s below the mean for monolingual peers. Significant growth in the ELLs' receptive vocabulary was observed between preschool and 2nd grade, indicating that the ELLs were slowly closing the receptive vocabulary gap, although their average score remained below the standard score mean for age-matched monolingual peers. The ELLs demonstrated a significant decrease in Spanish receptive vocabulary standard scores over time. Initial Spanish receptive vocabulary was a significant predictor of growth in English receptive vocabulary. High initial Spanish receptive vocabulary was associated with greater growth in English receptive vocabulary and decelerated growth in Spanish receptive vocabulary. Gender was not a significant predictor of growth in either English or Spanish receptive vocabulary. Conclusion: ELLs from low socioeconomic backgrounds may be expected to perform lower in English compared with their monolingual English peers in kindergarten. Performance in Spanish at school entry may be useful in identifying children who require more intensive instructional support for English vocabulary growth. Findings substantiate the need for progress monitoring across the early school years.
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA). 10801 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852. Tel: 800-638-8255; Fax: 301-571-0457; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Kindergarten; Primary Education; Early Childhood Education; Elementary Education; Grade 1; Grade 2; Preschool Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A