Dialect variation and reading: Is change in Nonmainstream american english use related to reading achievement in first and second grades?

Nicole Patton Terry, Carol McDonald Connor, Yaacov Petscher, Catherine Ross Conlin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: In this study, we examined (a) whether children who spoke Nonmainstream American English (NMAE) frequently in school at the beginning of 1st grade increased their use of Mainstream American English (MAE) through the end of 2nd grade, and whether increasing MAE use was associated with (b) language and reading skills and school context and (c) greater gains in reading skills. Method: A longitudinal design was implemented with 49 children who spoke NMAE moderately to strongly. Spoken production of NMAE forms, word reading, and reading comprehension were measured at the beginning, middle, and end of 1st and 2nd grades. Various oral language skills were also measured at the beginning of 1st grade. Results: Results indicate that most children increased their MAE production during 1st grade and maintained these levels in 2nd grade. Increasing MAE use was predicted by children's expressive vocabulary and nonword repetition skills at the beginning of 1st grade. Finally, the more children increased their MAE production, the greater were their reading gains from 1st grade through 2nd grade. Conclusions: The findings extend previous reports of a significant association between NMAE use and specific reading skills among young children and have implications for theory, educational practice, and future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)55-69
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research
Volume55
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2012
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

dialect
Reading
school grade
Language
Vocabulary
Dialect Variation
American English
educational practice
language
school
vocabulary
comprehension

Keywords

  • Dialect
  • Nonmainstream american english
  • Reading

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Speech and Hearing
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

Dialect variation and reading : Is change in Nonmainstream american english use related to reading achievement in first and second grades? / Terry, Nicole Patton; Connor, Carol McDonald; Petscher, Yaacov; Conlin, Catherine Ross.

In: Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, Vol. 55, No. 1, 01.02.2012, p. 55-69.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Terry, Nicole Patton ; Connor, Carol McDonald ; Petscher, Yaacov ; Conlin, Catherine Ross. / Dialect variation and reading : Is change in Nonmainstream american english use related to reading achievement in first and second grades?. In: Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research. 2012 ; Vol. 55, No. 1. pp. 55-69.
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