Using Braidy and the Story Grammar Marker as a ... - 4GASLPs

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and the Story
Grammar Marker as a Cognitive
Learning Strategy for Children
from Poverty.

Prepared by

Valerie Blackmon, M.Ed. CCC

Green Acres Elementary

Peer Review 3/28/11

the extent to which an individual
does without resources (Payne,1996).



Mental (acquired skills of reading,writing etc.)



Support Systems

Relationships/Role Models

Knowledge of Hidden Rules

Poverty Rates according to the
2009 US Census Bureau

In 2009, 43.6 million people were in poverty, up from 39.8
million in 2008

the third consecutive annual increase in the
number of people in poverty.

Between 2008 and 2009, the poverty rate increased for non
Hispanic Whites (from 8.6 percent to 9.4 percent), for Blacks
(from 24.7 percent to 25.8 percent), and for Hispanics (from
23.2 percent to 25.3 percent). For Asians, the 2009 poverty
rate (12.5 percent) was not statistically different from the 2008
poverty rate.

The number of people in poverty in 2009 (43.6 million) is the
largest number in the 51 years for which poverty estimates
have been published

Impacts of Poverty

Children from poverty are more likely to suffer developmental delays,
drop out of school and give birth during the teen years (Miranda,

Ethnic and language minority children, immigrants, and children from
low income families are particularly at risk for lower academic
achievement and low literacy levels at school entry (Washington,

Research has shown that the neural systems of poor children
develop differently from those of middle
class children, affecting
language development and "executive function," or the ability to
plan, remember details and pay attention in school (Payne, 1996).

Registers of Language

Formal Register
: The
standard sentence syntax
and word choice of work
and school. It is
characterized complete
sentences, specific word
choice and adheres to
grammatical rules.

Casual Register
: Language
spoken between friends. It
is characterized by a 400
800 word vocabulary.
Word choice is general
and not specific.
Conversation is
dependant upon non
verbal assists. Sentence
syntax is often incomplete.

Formal Register

Is the Language of School.

Language used for formal assessments.

(CRCT, SAT, college entrance exams,
aptitude tests, etc.)

Job Interviews

Discourse pattern is to get straight to the

Story Structure is sequential.

Most important element of story is the plot.

Casual Register

Majority of minority/ low income children are only able to
speak in the casual register

Characterized by a limited vocabulary.

Discourse pattern is to go around the issue before getting to
the point.

Story Structure is random and episodic.

Story Structure begins with the end of the story or part with the
greatest emotional intensity told first, is told in vignettes with
audience participation in between.

Most important part of the story is the characterization of the
people within the story.

Example of persona

remote event/story told in casual
register. (2

grade male)

SLP: Tell me what happened?

Student: XXX is lying on me and he did it. He hit me in the
face and then his brother said he was


and I’m like no you

get in trouble but he look at
me on the bus and then he start telling a lie cause he
know I know that and then I get in trouble cause he start
it. That’s why they not going to let him eat lunch in there.

SLP: Why did you get suspended?

Student: Cause, cause he
he’s a liar and he stole money
from XXX but he said I did but he did it and XXX saw it
too. He’s

get in trouble when my mom said
you’re a liar too.

SLP: Your teacher told me that you pushed XXX into the
storage closet? Did this happen?

Student: Well, he started it.

Dialect vs Register

Dialects involve the variations of a
language that depend on the place where
such language is spoken, or the fixed group
of people who speak it.

Registers involve the variations of a dialect
that depend on the social situation where
such dialect is spoken.


Cognitive research indicates that
Story Structure
how the brain stores memories.

Relying on a random and episodic story structure
results in disorganization and increased difficulty
with temporal sequencing, difficulty with
understanding causal relationships and reduces the
ability to predict outcomes (Feuerstein, 1980)

Something to think about…

(Feuerstein, 1980)

If an individual depends upon a random episodic story structure for
memory patterns, he/she lives in an unpredictable environment, and has
not developed the ability to plan, then…

If the individual cannot plan, then he/she cannot predict.

If the individual cannot predict, then he/she cannot identify cause and

If the individual cannot identify cause and effect, then he/she cannot
identify consequences.

If the individual cannot identify consequences, then he/she cannot
control impulsivity.

If the individual cannot control impulsivity, then he/she has an inclination
toward criminal behavior.

What does the research tell us?

Students coming from poverty lack the basic
concepts, vocabulary and
cognitive strategies
necessary to achieve academically in school.

“The true discrimination that comes out of
poverty is the lack of
cognitive strategies
. The
lack of these unseen attributes handicaps in
every aspect of life the individual who does not
have them.” (Payne, 1996).

What are some of the cognitive issues for
children from poverty?
(Payne, 1996, Feuerstein,

Lack of a systematic method of exploration which is directly
related to
story structure
. Learned information is gathered in a
haphazard, incomplete manner with weak semantic

Impaired verbal tools. They lack the vocabulary that makes
up the internal learning structure.

Impaired temporal orientation. The inability to organize or
measure time negatively impacts skills such as planning,
preparing, predicting outcomes, initiating and completing

What can the school based SLP do?


We teach basic concepts.

We support vocabulary development.

We model and teach Formal Register language patterns/rules.

We teach narrative skills/Story Structure

Moving forward…

Increase the use of direct instruction of
Cognitive/Learning Strategies
as part our language therapy.

What is a Cognitive/Learning
Strategy?(Feuerstein, 1980)

Cognitive/Learning strategies are techniques,
principles or rules that facilitate the acquisition,
manipulation, integration, storage and retrieval
of information across situations and settings.

The “Filing Cabinet” analogy.

Strategies are tools and techniques we use to
help ourselves understand and learn new

How do we learn Cognitive
Strategies? (Feuerstein, 1980)

Through Mediation.

The intervention of an adult.

Mediation builds cognitive strategies.

Consists of identifying the stimulus (missing
cognitive strategies).

Assigning Meaning to the stimulus

Identifying a strategy to remediate the
missing cognitive process.

Interventions that build cognitive strategies

(Idol and Jones, 1991).

Using Graphic Organizers

Teaching systematic approaches to analyzing data

Establish Goal Setting and Procedural Talk

Teach Conceptual Frameworks

Use Kinesthetic teaching methods

Use Rubrics

Teach the Structure of Language

Teach students how to Make Questions

Teach How to Sort Relevant from Irrelevant

Teach Mental Models

How can we use Braidy/SGM to improve
Cognitive Strategies

Planning/Goal setting/Procedural Self Talk “How do I get started?”

Focusing on “Key” information

Improve vocabulary

Teach the components of Story (beginning, middle, end, main idea, plot and

Improve temporal concepts/use time order words, cohesive ties

Organize visual information (Graphic organizers, maps)

Improve comprehension through connections (text, self, world)

Use kinesthetic/tactile approach (Braidy doll, SGM marker)

Use rubric as a way to self evaluate/reflect. “Did I….”

Directly teach the structure of language, build Formal Register “Does that
sound right?” Let students write in casual then translate into formal register

Critical Thinking Triangle, Direct Consequence and Resolution (cause/effect)


, et al. (1980).
Instrumental Enrichment: An intervention
Program for Cognitive Modifiability.


& Co.

Idol, Lorna, & Jones, B.F. (Eds.). (1991).
Educational Values and Cognitive
Instruction: Implications for Reform.

Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum

Miranda, Leticia C. (1991).
Latino Child Poverty in the United States.

Washington, DC:

Defense Fund.

Payne, Ruby (1996).
A Framework for Understanding Poverty.
Highlands, TX.
aha! Process Inc.

Washington, Julie A. (2011 March, Best Practices)
Language, Literacy and
Linguistic Differences.
[PowerPoint slides]. Retrieved from