Project SOLO™ Center for Literacy & Disability Studies An NCTI Technology In The Works project
Overview Project SOLO™ is designed to investigate the additive benefits of SOLO™ software and ready-made assignments for SOLO™ software to self-regulated strategy instruction (SRSI) for middle-grades students with and without identified disabilities who struggle with writing.
Design • Quasi-experimental, pretest/posttest • Random assignment of 9 teachers to one of three treatment conditions: • Self-Regulated Strategy Instruction Only • Self-Regulated Strategy Instruction plus SOLO™ • Self-Regulated Strategy Instruction plus SOLO™ with Ready-Made assignments produced by the research team to the teacher’s specifications. • Six weeks of intervention (18 lessons) • Ongoing classroom observations and collection of observational data including fidelity checklists.
Research Measures • Pretest/Posttest Measures: • Test of Written Language – 3 (TOWL-3, Hammill & Larsen, 1996) • Writing Attitudes Survey (Kear, Coffman, McKenna, & Ambrosio, 2000) • Focus Group Interviews • Ongoing Collection of writing samples for a variety of dependent writing variables identified (De La Paz and Graham, 1997). • Participant Observation of instruction • Fidelity Checklist
Research Hypotheses • All subjects, independent of group membership will show a significant increase in their written language abilities as a result of self-regulated strategy instruction with and without SOLO™; • There will be a significant difference between groups for all written language abilities as a result of self-regulated strategy instruction with and without SOLO™; and • There will be a significant difference between groups for writing attitudes as a result of self-regulated strategy instruction with and without SOLO™.
Participants • Nine teachers, 3 each in grades 3, 4, and 5. • Seven of the teachers hold a masters degree and 4 have National Board Certification. • They have been teaching for an average of 12 years (range 3-30 years). • 111 students from 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade general education settings. • Include all children on the classroom roster including those with identified disabilities, those without disabilities who struggle to write, and all other children.
The School A North Carolina School Honor of Excellence Total Student Enrollment: 395 Average Class Size: 14-21 Students Qualifying for Free or Reduced Lunch: 49% Nonwhite Students: 32% (27% African American) Students with Disabilities Passing End of Grade Tests: 64% Number of Students per Computer: 3.24 Achieved Adequate Yearly Progress on All Measures According to NCLB
The Intervention • The self-regulated strategy instruction to be used as the intervention is a framework for teaching students to be fluent and automatic in the application of strategies while writing (Harris, Graham, & Mason, 2003). • All teachers were provided with an example of the 18 lessons for the writing strategy they were implementing at their grade level.
Self-Regulated Strategy Development Instruction The six stages of the writing strategy instruction are: • Build Background • Discuss It • Model It • Memorize It • Support It • Independent Performance
Strategy Selection • 3rd grade: • summary writing strategy • 4th grade: • narrative writing strategy • SSCARE (Narrative strategy developed by teachers for project): Situation, Setting, Characters, Action, Reaction, Ending • 5th grade: • expository writing strategy • TH3 TNT (Expositorystrategy developed by teachers for project): Topic, Hook, 3 Details + Topic, NEED to enumerate, Topic
Current Activities • Complete scoring and analysis of data. • Following teachers, particularly those in the no-SOLO™ group, as they implement SOLO™ this spring. • Work with individual students with the most significant learning disabilities providing individual self-regulated strategy instruction using SOLO™.