Medium 9781475824506

JEBPS Vol 13-N2

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The Journal of Evidence-Based Practices for Schools is a leader in publishing research-to-practice articles for educators and school psychologists. The mission of this journal is to positively influence the daily practice of school-based professionals through studies demonstrating successful research-based practices in educational settings. As a result, the editors are committed to publishing articles with an eye toward improving student performance and outcomes by advancing psychological and educational practices in the schools. They seek articles using non-technical language that (1) outline an evidence-based practice, (2) describe the literature supporting the effectiveness and theoretical underpinnings of the practice, (3) describe the findings of a study in which the practice was implemented in an educational setting, and (4) provide readers with information they need to implement the practice in their own schools in a section entitled Implementation Guidelines. The Journal of Evidence-Based Practices for Schools differs from other scholarly journals in that it features articles that demonstrate empirically-based procedures for readers to apply the practice in their setting.

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The Effects of Group Contingencies With Randomized Components on the Homework Accuracy of an 11th- and 12th-Grade General Science Class

ePub

Paula Ferneza
Michael Jabot
Larry Maheady

ABSTRACT: This collaborative research project was conducted in an 11th- and 12th- grade science class with a small group of students who performed below expectation on daily homework assignments. The mystery motivator game, an intervention package consisting of interdependent and dependent group contingencies and mystery motivators, was used to increase the class’s science homework accuracy by about one letter grade. The intervention required all students to initially complete daily homework assignments (i.e., 100% completion criterion). When they did, the teacher randomly selected one pupil’s name from a brown paper bag and graded it privately. If the randomly selected paper was at least 85% correct, then the entire class earned a chance to win a mystery motivator (i.e., unknown reward). Results showed moderate and fairly immediate increases in the class’s science homework accuracy. All students had higher homework averages when the game was in effect, and pupils rated the intervention favorably. Implications for research and practice are offered.

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IMPLEMENTATION GUIDELINES

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The Effects of Group Contingencies With Randomized Components on the Homework Accuracy of an 11th- and 12th-Grade Science Class

Paula Ferneza
Michael Jabot
Larry Maheady

The mystery motivator game—a combination of interdependent and dependent group contingencies and unknown rewards—can improve a variety of academic, behavioral, and interpersonal outcomes in schools. In addition, the intervention can be used in elementary or secondary schools and with students at differing ability levels, including those with special needs. The mystery motivator game is also appropriate for general and special education classrooms and can be adapted easily to existing classroom management structures.

Almost any academic, social, or interpersonal behavior can be targeted for intervention. It is recommended, however, that practitioners focus on increasing appropriate rather than decreasing inappropriate behaviors. Appropriate behaviors might include increased academic productivity (e.g., in-class or homework assignment completion and accuracy), following classroom rules (e.g., raise hands before speaking, use inside voices when talking with others, and keep hands and feet to yourself), more active engagement in class, and improved interpersonal behavior (e.g., using positive statements when addressing others, sharing materials and space, and providing assistance to peers). While group contingencies and mystery motivators can be used to reduce disruptive and aggressive behaviors, it is always important to provide students with appropriate replacement behaviors.

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Social Stories for Children With Autism Spectrum Disorders: Updated Review of the Literature from 2004 to 2010

ePub

Amanda K. Stary
Gregory E. Everett
Katie Bradshaw Sears
Mayo Fujiki
Stephen D. A. Hupp

ABSTRACT: The current review summarizes 19 investigations documenting the use of Social Stories with children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders. As a follow-up to Nichols, Hupp, Jewell, and Zeigler (2005), the current review outlines only those experimental studies published from 2004 through 2010. Studies are first organized according to those child behaviors targeted for change and further subdivided on the basis of Social Story delivery. Specifically, studies are categorized regarding whether Social Stories were used to increase social skills, decrease disruptive behavior, or concurrently target behavioral increases and decreases. They are then subdivided according to whether the story was read to or by participating children or delivered through technological means. In addition, an overall summary of included studies is included, as well as directions for future research.

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IMPLEMENTATION GUIDELINES

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Developing and Implementing Social Story Interventions

Stephen D. A. Hupp
Amanda K. Stary
Gregory E. Everett

In the peer-reviewed research, Social Stories have been used present social information to children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders between the ages of 3 to 15 years old. According to Carol Gray (2000), the developer of Social Stories, they “are often written in response to a troubling situation, in an effort to provide a person with [autism spectrum disorder] with the social information he may be lacking” (p. 13-1). Gray also adds that “Social Stories have another purpose that is equally important and frequently overlooked: acknowledging achievement” (p. 13-2). Because no research has been done on using Social Stories to acknowledge achievement, these guidelines focus on writing Social Stories designed for the purpose of conveying information about social skills or disruptive behavior.

Gray’s The New Social Story Book was published in 2000, and it provides guidelines for writing Social Stories. Because the Social Stories used in the research literature were primarily based on Gray’s guidelines, these will be the guidelines presented here. Gray published a revised version of these guidelines in the 2010 version of the book; however, there are no significant changes other than their organization. Either edition of the book is useful. Throughout her guidelines, Gray emphasizes that Social Stories should be written in a patient and reassuring tone. Thus, while behavior change is often a secondary goal, the primary goal is to simply convey information to the child or adolescent.

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Examining Explicit Vocabulary Instruction and Cover, Copy, Compare as a Classwide Instructional Package to Improve Spelling and Vocabulary Knowledge

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Shobana Musti-Rao
Joanne Khaw
Renee O. Hawkins

ABSTRACT: We evaluated the classwide application of spelling and vocabulary instruction on 38 fourth-grade students’ performance on weekly spelling and vocabulary tests. Specially, an instructional package including explicit vocabulary instruction and a cover, copy, and compare procedure was compared to the existing language arts instructional strategies, which did not include explicit vocabulary or spelling instruction. The instructional package was implemented at the classwide level by a fourth-grade language arts teacher. Results indicate that all students benefited from explicit instruction in vocabulary and spelling, as evidenced by higher scores in these two areas in comparison to when no explicit instruction was provided. Implications for practice and directions for future research are discussed.

T eaching reading and writing are integral parts of elementary language arts curriculums. The research documenting the link between reading and writing suggests that these two processes are complementary (Laflamme, 1997). Vocabulary knowledge plays a key role in both reading comprehension and writing (National Reading Panel, 2000). Students with poor vocabularies have lower levels of reading comprehension and are less likely to engage in reading, further impeding their reading performance and language acquisition (Joshi, 2005). Similarly, the ability to write depends on vocabulary knowledge. Students with stronger vocabularies tend to communicate more clearly and use a rich vocabulary in the writing process.

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IMPLEMENTATION GUIDELINES

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Combining Vocabulary Instruction With Cover, Copy, and Compare to Increase Vocabulary and Spelling Skills

Shobana Musti-Rao
Joanne Khaw
Renee O. Hawkins

The study took place in a fourth-grade general education classroom of a public school in the city-state of Singapore. Prior to the start of the study, all students received a list of spelling words each week with no explicit instruction on the words. The students were expected to learn the words on their own and complete a written spelling test each week. Despite evidence that writing is dependent on vocabulary knowledge (Brynildssen, 2000), current school practices continue to include traditional approaches to spelling instruction (Alber & Walshe, 2004; McAuley & McLaughlin, 1992) and de-emphasize vocabulary instruction (VI; Tam, Heward, & Heng, 2006). VI at the upper elementary level should focus on providing students with both definitional and conceptual knowledge of words by providing multiple exposures to word meanings within and outside of context (Stahl & Fairbanks, 1986).

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Investigation of a Parent-Directed Intervention Designed to Promote Early Literacy Skills in Preschool Children

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Ashley N. Sundman-Wheat
Kathy L. Bradley-Klug
Julia A. Ogg

ABSTRACT: The effectiveness of a parent-directed intervention on the development of early literacy skills in six children attending Head Start was investigated using a multiple-baseline, across-participants design. The intervention included activities focusing on phonological awareness and letter-naming fluency. Visual analysis and examination of nonoverlapping data points across phases revealed increases on measures of phonological awareness and letter-naming abilities for all participants. Data revealed variability in treatment integrity across participants and consistent positive ratings of intervention acceptability. Recommendations for future research and implications for practice are discussed.

I n a recent report by the National Center for Education Statistics (2009), only 33% of students in the United States were at or above a proficient level in reading. Even more troubling was that only two thirds (67%) of students attained a basic level of reading achievement (NCES, 2009). The National Reading Panel (2000) reported that over 17.5% of children will have reading problems within their first 3 years of school. Legislation addresses the literacy problem with both expectations for achievement and parent involvement (e.g., No Child Left Behind Act). Section 1118 of No Child Left Behind states that schools should encourage parents to assist in their child’s learning, be actively involved in education, and be included in making decisions about their child’s education.

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IMPLEMENTATION GUIDELINES

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A Caregiver-Directed Intervention Designed to Promote Early Literacy Skills in Preschool Children

Ashley N. Sundman-Wheat
Kathy L. Bradley-Klug
Julia A. Ogg

TARGET GROUP

The intervention is designed for caregivers to use with young children transitioning into kindergarten for the next school year.

TARGET SETTING

The intervention program can be implemented by caregivers in their home. Minimal contact with a professional for supervision of the intervention is necessary, other than initial training on how to complete lessons and weekly reminders via phone.

TARGET SKILLS

The focus of this intervention program is to assist caregivers in developing two key early literacy skills within their children: alphabetic knowledge and phonological awareness. These skills are moderate predictors of later reading skill mastery (National Early Literacy Panel, 2008).

THE INTERVENTION

This early literacy intervention was created by combining two interventions within the research literature. The two interventions are scripted into 27 lesson plans for caregivers to follow. Each lesson is divided into three sections: (1) teaching one new letter through a mnemonic device, (2) reviewing the three letters from the previous three sessions, and (3) teaching word onset identification through a three-stage process. To teach new letters, an intervention strategy from Raschke, Alper, and Eggers (1999) is used, which entails the use of mnemonics. The intervention involves teaching a short sentence that has the letter name embedded within it, paired with a letter name and an image. For example, a picture of an escalator is paired with the upper and lowercase versions of s and the sentence “Escalators are moving stairs.” Parents emphasize the sound of the letter name when saying the sentence aloud (“es calators”). Children repeat the sentence and the name of the letter. Prompts are gradually faded until no more are needed (e.g., whispering the sentence, removing the picture and saying the phrase and letter). Finally, three letters from the previous lessons are reviewed by showing the letter and picture cards together and asking the child to state the sentence and letter name.

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