Date of Award

5-1980

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Education and Human Development

First Advisor

Dr. Arthur Smith

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the effect that an intensive program of language development had on the expressive and receptive language of kindergarten children.

The design of this study was a one group pretest, posttest design. This study consisted of approximately twenty-five kindergarten children from a rural community. Each student was pretested individually using the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (Form A), the Test of Language Development, and a taped, oral test developed by the researcher. At the conclusion of the instruction, each child was individually posttested using the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test (Form B), the Test of Language Development, and a taped, oral test developed by the researcher.

A program of language development was extended over a period of six months from December to May. The program of language development was based on the Peabody Language Development Kit, Levels One and Two, and a language-experience approach based on the books An Experience-Based Approach to Language and Reading by Braun and Froese (1977) and Language Face to Face edited by Early (1971)

A t test for Related Measures was employed to determine any significant differences between pretest and posttest scores of the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test and the Test of Language Development. The oral, taped, researcher-devised test was scored according to the syntactic analysis developed by Ekhtiar (1962) and used in studies of language by Strickland. A descriptive score was obtained from this analysis providing information regarding the basic patterns of structure which appear in the oral language of children and tha patterns of subordination and elaboration which are employed.

From this study, findings indicated that there was no statistically significant difference in expressive language but that statistically significant differences existed in the area of receptive language and in a combination of expressive and receptive language. In the descriptive analysis, there was considerable difference in the pretest and posttest results. The most noticeable difference was on the first level of analysis which identified the patterns of stationary elements. Findings from the study showed that the children’s ability to understand and use their language had increased significantly while their skills of imitating speech had not been noticeably changed.

From the results, it can be concluded that an intensive program of language development can make a significant difference on the receptive and on a combination of receptive and expressive language of kindergarten children.

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