• Integrating comprehension instruction, multimodalities and co-construction into cultural learning

      Harrington, Christine; Hogan, Maureen; Martelle, Wendy; Patterson, Leslie (2018-12)
      This study explores the impact of a story-based approach to teaching reading strategies, and examines the implementation of and co-construction within multimodal activities. Eight third grade students participated in this study in a charter school focused on Alaska Native cultural learning. The phases of the PACE Model focused on transitional words and phrases in the context of a traditional story from the Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian cultures of Alaska. Their attention to the language feature was extended to summarizing and retelling as part of the Extension phase of the model. The results are consistent with previous studies that attributed focus on form to language development and accuracy in dual language and second language settings.
    • Postwar reconciliation: parental attitudes towards Sri Lanka's trilingual education policy

      Malalasekera, Nimasha S.; Marlow, Patrick; Siekmann, Sabine; Martelle, Wendy (2019-08)
      After 26 years, the ethnic-based civil war in Sri Lanka ended in 2009. The Trilingual Education Policy seeks to reconcile the estranged Sinhalese and Tamil communities by teaching each community the other's language in this postwar context. Scholars argue that national reconciliation through Trilingual Education is unlikely to succeed because of the continued mistrust and prejudice between the two communities and the demand for English as key to social mobility and economic prosperity. Since these claims are not supported by empirical evidence, this study seeks to find empirical data to support or counter these claims. The study investigates parental attitudes to their second languages, Sinhala, Tamil, and English, the three languages of the Trilingual Education Policy to understand its likely success. Twenty-one parents whose children receive Sinhala, Tamil, and English L2 tuition in Colombo 5 were selected through convenience sampling. The study uses the constructivist grounded theory, mentalist approach to language attitudes, and concepts of capital and linguicism for data analysis. The study found that Sinhala has capital for the Tamils and is valued and glorified by them, whereas Tamil has no capital for the Sinhalese and is devalued and stigmatized by them. Both groups valorize and glorify English, for it has more capital than Sinhala/Tamil both locally and translocally. Concluding that the Trilingual Education Policy is unlikely to succeed because of linguicism, the study recommends providing incentives for learning Sinhala and Tamil and advocating dual language education for reconciling the two communities.
    • A teacher's role in feedback and instructional conversations in a kindergarten ELA classroom

      Fairbanks, Emerie; Hogan, Maureen; Martelle, Wendy; Siekmann, Sabine (2018-12)
      This teacher action research examines the role of the teacher and the use of feedback to support kindergarten students' language development. This study provides three emergent categories: A) Corrective feedback provided by the teacher with and without the option of the correct form of students' utterance. B) Student provided feedback: self-correction (no teacher influence) or correcting a classmate. C) Extending the conversation through teacher prompting and students collaborating in the meaning-making process. The findings showed providing feedback was beneficial to students' language development. The findings in this research study can be used to inform educators interested in the role feedback plays in language development as well as how they can most effectively provide feedback to student errors. Although educators' contexts may be different, the findings in this study may assist and guide them in discovering what methods and ways of providing feedback work best for them and their students.