卓越實證概述 Best Evidence in Brief

Kindergarten

Can enrichment math clubs improve mathematics skills for kindergarten students?

High 5s is a small-group after school math enrichment program for kindergarteners who have previously been exposed to the Building Blocks preschool math curriculum. A study published by the Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness assessed the success of this program with 655 kindergarten students in 24 schools who received the program three times a week for half an hour with a trained instructor. The program was structured such that each meeting would consist of 2 short startup activities and conclude with a main activity. Every 4th day was a game day where students were allowed to choose from select activities. While student attendance was high, the quality of instruction varied across club leaders. The results of the High 5s evaluation intervention were mixed: The study showed significantly higher math scores for the intervention students on an assessment that was closely aligned with the program curriculum. However, there were no significant benefits for students...

22 10 2020
The Cost-Benefit Case for Tutoring

Individual preK-12 tutoring experiments, varying widely in context, approach, and cost, have shown the positive impact of tutoring and small-group programs. However, a recent meta-analysis sought to summarize the findings of experimental studies since 1980. The study is the first systematic review or meta-analysis of experimental research on preK-12 tutoring interventions of all types. The authors defined tutoring as one-to-one or small-group human instruction aimed at supplementing rather than replacing classroom-based education. No correlational or quasi-experimental studies were included in this review. Through the search and screening process, 96 studies were included. The authors found that: Tutoring programs yield substantial positive impacts on learning outcomes, with an overall pooled effect size estimate of +0.37. Furthermore, effects are stronger on average for teacher and paraprofessional tutoring programs as opposed to nonprofessional and parent tutoring. Effects also tend to be strongest among the earlier grades. The main takeaways from this review are nothing new....

07 10 2020
Metacognition and Self-Regulated Learning: What works and what does not

Developing metacognition and self-regulated learning (SRL) skills improves educational performance and attainment. There is evidence that interventions focused on these skills may help students from low SES backgrounds, but we are still learning how best to facilitate this development. A recent review by Daniel Muijs and Christian Bokhove of the University of Southampton in England synthesized studies to determine the programs and characteristics that have the greatest impact on metacognitive and SRL development. Effective instruction included direct approaches via explicit instruction and modeling of metacognition and SRL practices by teachers, and indirect approaches such as the presence of a learning environment with relevant practice opportunities, dialogue, and scaffolded inquiry with student autonomy. Teachers felt more successful programs lasted more than two semesters, included leadership support, training and mentoring, and a receptive environment for the intervention. Some practices appeared to have more of an impact than others. Intrinsic to the process of SRL and...

27 08 2020
Children’s prosocial behaviors also promote happiness

Cultivating prosocial behaviors is an important educational goal. A recent study published in Frontiers in Psychology examined whether prosocial behaviors were also rewarding for young children. The participating children were given a sharing, an instrumental helping task, and an empathic helping task. Their prosocial behaviors and happiness levels during and after the tasks were coded and compared. The study was conducted using a Dutch cohort and a Chinese cohort of young children to examine whether cultural differences exist. In total, there were 122 Dutch toddlers of which 101 participated again one year later, and 91 Chinese preschoolers involved in the study.  The following results were found consistent across both Chinese and Dutch children: Compared with receiving treats, children became happier after sharing. Children also became happier after performing instrumental helping behaviors. Whether children were being thanked after they helped others did not change their happiness levels. The authors concluded that prosocial behaviors...

27 08 2020
Effects of MyTeachingPartner-Math/Science on teaching practice and child outcomes

A study published in the Journal of Research on Educational Effectiveness reports on the impact of the program MyTeachingPartner-Math/Science (MTP-M/S) on teaching practice and students’ math and science skills in pre-kindergarten. MTP-M/S is a pre-k curriculum primarily composed of inquiry-based activities and supported by a high dosage of professional development for teachers before and during program implementation. For this study, 140 pre-k classrooms in the mid-western and southeastern U.S. were randomly assigned to the intervention or the business-as-usual condition. The MTP-M/S program was implemented in 33-week long units (twice a week for each subject) over 2 years. The results were as follows: At the end of year 1, teachers in the treatment group had higher levels of mathematics and science teaching quality evaluated through video-taped observations, as compared to the control group. No significant effects were found in children’s math and science outcomes at the end of the first year, but science and math skills...

27 08 2020
How effective are book giveaway programs in improving children’s literacy?

Preschool intervention programs have been of great interest to educational researchers, since early childhood investments can yield robust long-term benefits. A recent research article, published in the current issue of Review of Educational Research, investigated the effectiveness of book giveaway programs for infants’ families. Researchers focused on three major book giveaway programs: Bookstart in the UK, Reach Out and Read in the USA, and Imagination Library in the USA. Each program has different treatment dosages: Before a child turns five, Bookstart provides up to two books; Reach Out and Read provides up to ten books; and Imagination Library supplies up to 60 books. After filtering through the inclusion criteria, researchers included 44 studies in their meta-analysis: 11 concerning  Bookstart, 18 concerning  Reach Out and Read, and 15 concerning  Imagination Library. By providing easily accessible and age-appropriate books, book giveaway programs aim to motivate parents to begin reading to their children from infancy, which...

12 08 2020
The relation between student motivation and reading performance

The latest issue of Review of Educational Research presents a meta-analysis on the relationship between reading achievement and motivation. The review examined whether ability to decode and understand text, goal orientation, students’ at-risk status, or grade level moderated the relationship, as well as whether motivation and reading are related over time. Jessica Toste and colleagues at the University of Texas at Austin and the University of Iowa included 132 peer-reviewed articles with 1,154 effect sizes. Most of the studies took place in the United States (41%). Other studies were from Canada or Europe. Results suggested that: The relation between motivation and reading achievement is moderate (ES = +0.22). For specific reading domains, average correlations with motivation were moderate as well: ES = +0.19 for the ability to read in an accurate and fluent way, ES = +0.21 for the ability to understand and learn from reading text, and ES= +0.23 for general reading. Further...

29 07 2020
Teaching Students to Recognize Expository Text Structures

Students tend to struggle understanding informational text more than narrative text. What instructional strategies for fostering informational (expository) text comprehension are backed by strong evidence of effectiveness? One intervention strategy is teaching students to recognize expository text structures. Text structure is the organization of ideas, the relationship among the ideas, and the vocabulary used to convey meaning to the reader. The thought is that if readers can understand that authors purposely use various structures to organize text, then readers are assisted to construct an integrated mental representation of key ideas similar to the text’s organization. In a systematic review of 21 studies, Pyle and colleagues examined the effects of expository text structure interventions on comprehension outcomes of typically achieving students, at-risk students, and students with learning disabilities in grades K–12. Supporting the findings of previous reviews, Pyle found that teaching students to recognize text structures produced large effects on reading comprehension....

01 07 2020
Balanced reading and writing programs: More than the sum of their parts

While many reviews already examine the impact of either reading or writing interventions, a recent meta-analysis took an alternative approach by analyzing studies focused on programs balancing writing and reading instruction to determine if these programs had greater success in developing these skills. Including 47 studies, Graham and colleagues analyzed 46 unique programs, each with no more than 60% of instruction dedicated to either reading or writing, arguing that programs focused on both skill sets could improve skills in both reading and writing, and that while research shows that reading instruction improves writing and vice versa, studies had not determined the impact of balanced programs. The included programs were divided into 9 categories: cooperative learning, content literacy, early literacy, home based, literature based, remedial, strategy instruction, whole language, and IBM’s Writing to Read (a computer-based program). Of these, cooperative learning approaches were the most common type of program, followed by Writing to...

01 07 2020