Effects of Peer Assisted Learning Strategies on Early Reading Development in an Elementary EFL Reading Program
|關鍵字:||同儕輔助學習策略;三年級英語學習者;閱讀表現評量;低閱讀與高閱讀能力者;Peer assisted learning strategies;EFL third graders;reading performance measure;less and more-proficient readers|
|摘要:||The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies (PALS) implemented in an elementary EFL reading program to enhance a group of EFL third graders’ early reading skills. The participants were 15 third graders selected from a public elementary school in Taiwan, ten of which were less-proficient English learners and five more-proficient according to their English teachers.
The pre- and post-intervention assessments included baseline and target reading measures. The baseline measures used the subtests from standardized reading tests, the Woodcock Reading Mastery Tests-Revised (WRMT-R, Woodcock, 1987) and the Test of Phonological Awareness (TOPA, Torgesen & Bryant, 1994) and assessed students’ phonological awareness, letter naming, and word reading skills. The target reading measures, on the other hand, included tests which measured letter-sound recognition, sound blending, and sight word reading. The PALS early reading program of the present study adapted the PALS procedures used in the previous PALS studies to train the participants to follow the peer-assisted learning procedures involved when practicing early reading skills. This PALS early reading program spanned a period of 13 weeks that entailed one 30 minute session a week.
In addition to the quantitative data collected from pre- and post-intervention measures, qualitative data gathered from onsite observation checklists, video and audio recordings, and a student’s perception questionnaire were used to supplement the study findings.
The results of the pre-intervention measures showed that the less-proficient learners had already possessed a basic knowledge of letter names and phonological awareness skills as measured by the TOPA subtests of initial and final sound identification. However, the less-proficient learners appeared to have limited skills in letter-sound recognition, sound blending and sight words. The more-proficient learners, on the other hand, performed better on the pre-intervention baseline and target measures, indicating that they had a good grasp on early reading skills. After the 13-week PALS early reading intervention, the post-intervention results indicated that the less-proficient learners made an overall significant improvement in both the baseline and target reading measures. In particular, these students were very much improved on the three targeted reading measures and all three effect sizes were strong. As for their more-proficient peers, an increase in scores of the baseline and targeted measures were observed with a statistically significant improvement in letter-sound recognition, sound blending, and sight words. The onsite observation checklists and audio or video recordings used to supplement the study findings further showed that over the course of 13 weeks, the readers in all PALS reading groups made progress in carrying out the early reading PALS procedures; however, some less-proficient learners were observed less capable and confident in implementing the procedures. Even during the final weeks of the PALS reading program, they still relied on their more-proficient peers to practice the letter-sound recognition, sound blending, and sight words taught during the program.
The present study extended previous PALS research done on L1-English learners and suggested that EFL learners too could derive benefits from PALS in the development of early reading skills. Further to this, the PALS procedure makes use of a systematic and explicit phonological awareness instruction, which practices early reading skills that are beneficial to both the less-proficient and more-proficient learner.
The results of this study corresponded well with the positive results found in foregoing studies at elementary school level, suggesting that peer tutoring can be a useful aide in the development of early reading and phonological skills stretching across a broad spectrum of learners from the low to average and even the high-achieving learners. The major implication of the present study suggests that PALS as an English reading instructional tool provides an already well researched, systematic early reading program to teachers that need to deal with a many varied academic diversity amongst learners.
Keywords: Peer assisted learning strategies, EFL third graders, reading performance measures, less and more-proficient readers|
本研究的目的在檢視同儕輔助學習策略(Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies, PALS)應用在國小初階英語閱讀增強教學上，對於以英語為外語的學生在英語閱讀方面的成效。研究對象為臺灣一所公立小學的三年級學生，本研究共有15名學生參與，10名為授課英語教師評估為英語學習落後的學生，5位為英語能力較佳且願意協助同儕學習的同學。研究前、後測包含基準(baseline)及學習成效(targeted measures)測驗；基準測驗使用英語閱讀能力標準化測驗工具，而學習成效測驗包含了PALS閱讀計畫所著重的三項初階閱讀技能，即字母發音認讀、音素混合與英語常見字認讀。 本研究之英語閱讀增強計畫透過同儕輔助學習策略，訓練參與學生系統性的運用初階閱讀技巧，並互相協助、共同練習、同儕教學。閱讀計畫為期13週，每週上課一次，每次30分鐘。除了研究前、後測的量化成績，本研究亦進行現場觀察紀錄、錄影、錄音及學生問卷等相關文件收集，冀以同儕互動之觀察及學生態度資料分析來輔助量化資料之解釋。 研究前測顯示，英語學習落後的三年級學生，對英文字母、字首或字尾子音的音韻覺識已有一定的能力，但字母發音認讀、音素混合及常見字的認讀能仍不熟悉；而英語能力較佳學生的基準及閱讀技能測驗上均有較佳的成績，顯示他們已具英語初階閱讀一定的基本能力。後測結果顯示，英語學習落後的學生在基準測驗及閱讀學習成效測驗整體而言均達統計顯著的進步，特別是三項初階閱讀計劃著重的閱讀技巧均有明顯的進步，效益量(effect size)亦極強。而本英語閱讀增強計畫也同樣幫助了英語能力較佳的學生，特別是提升了他們音素混合的技巧與常見字的認讀。觀察資料及影音轉譯的逐字稿進一步顯示，雖然參與PALS閱讀計劃的學生在閱讀技巧及學習成效上已明顯的進步，在閱讀計劃後期，所有的PALS閱讀小組皆能獨立並確實完成PALS閱讀技巧步驟，然而部分英語學習落後的學生直到後期，仍需仰賴同儕提供協助以進行字母發音認讀、音素混合與英語常見字認讀等活動。閱讀計畫結束後的學生的反映問卷普遍顯示學生對同儕輔助學習策略PALS閱讀計畫持正面的態度，也表示和同儕一起學習、練習閱讀技巧有幫助；然而部分到後期仍須仰賴英文能力佳同學協助的學生抱持較負面的評價，不認為自己自同儕協助中獲得助益。這結果顯示同儕輔助學習策略對不同學習型態的學生皆有必然的助益。 本研究結果呼應並延伸過去以英語為母音學習者的PALS研究，進一步支持同儕輔助學習策略PALS有助對英語為外語的國小學童學習並發展閱讀技巧，有系統性的運用初階閱讀訓練，同儕協助、共同練習、同儕教學不僅嘉惠英語學習落後的學生，也能裨益英語能力較佳學生的閱讀技巧。本研究所發展的閱讀訓練模式可作爲目前台灣英語教師面對學生英語程度迥異的班級學生，可融合此有效教學模式參考之依據。 關鍵字：同儕輔助學習策略、三年級英語學習者、閱讀表現評量、低閱讀與高閱讀能力者
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