LON28/06/17 Multilingualism/EAL and Dyslexia: An Introduction

Date: 28/06/2017

Location: Ambassadors

Price (per person): Members £155, Non-members £185

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LON28/06/17 Multilingualism/EAL and Dyslexia: An Introduction

Extra places added due to popular demand!

Presenters: Claudine Bowyer-Crane and Val Muter

Booking Ref: LON28/6/16

Day of Week: Wednesday

Course Times: 10.00am to 4.15pm (registration from 9.30am)

Link to Venue: Ambassadors Hotel, Bloomsbury 

Target audience: EAL Teachers, Classroom Teachers, SENCO’s, specialist teachers/ assessors and other professionals working with multilingual dyslexic and EAL pupils in primary education. A specialist qualification is not essential for this course. 

Prerequisites: Some experience in working with multilingual dyslexic students and or working with EAL students in primary schools would be useful

Course Description: This course is designed for teachers and other professionals to explore the effect of multilingualism on the assessment and screening of dyslexic learners.The morning part of the course will cover areas:

  • The phonology-reading connection in multi-lingual children
  • Screening for reading failure in multi-lingual children
  • Learning to read in different orthographies
  • Dyslexia and second language learners
  • Assessing dyslexia in the multi-lingual child

The afternoon lecture will cover the impact of coming from an Additional Language (EAL) background both for the dyslexic and non-dyslexic primary students will be explored regarding Vocabulary development. The use of an app for assessing receptive vocabulary will be examined on the day. Additionally, the use of the multi-contextual method of vocabulary instruction that has been demonstrated to be effective in improving EAL children access to the primary curriculum will be explored.
A consistent achievement gap is found in national assessments of language and literacy between EAL children and their monolingual peers at the early stages of schooling.

There are more than a million children aged 5 – 18 years old in UK schools who speak in excess of 360 languages between them. Based on international research we know that at least 3% of these students will be dyslexic both in their first language and English. A phonological processing deficit seems to be continuous across languages. However, the structure of the student’s first language can create a subtle difference which makes both the assessment and teaching of the learner’s profile problematic. The course, designed for EAL teachers, classroom teachers, SENCo’s specialist teachers/ assessors and other professionals working in primary education, will provide an opportunity to explore some of the subtle challenges faced by educators in schools across the country.

The day will cover

  • The phonology-reading connection in multi-lingual children
  • Screening for reading failure in multi-lingual children
  • Learning to read in different orthographies
  • Dyslexia and second language learners
  • Assessing dyslexia in the multi-lingual child
  • The use of an app that has been developed for assessing receptive vocabulary in a child’s home language which is designed to be used by practitioners working with EAL students, will be demonstrated and access to it will made available in the training.
  • The use an evidence based approach to improve vocabulary will be examined. This approach is called the multi-contextual method of vocabulary instruction and has resulted in significant gains in knowledge of specific vocabulary taught as part of an intervention.

Please Note: This course is not SASC authorised.

Presenters:
Dr Valerie Muter:
Dr Muter recently retired from her post as a consultant clinical neuropsychologist at Great Ormond St Hospital for Children where she specialises in working with children with neurologically-based learning disorders. She is an honorary lecturer at the Institute of Child Health, University College London where she contributes to the MSc course in paediatric neuropsychology.

Dr Muter has a long-standing interest in early literacy development and disorders of literacy in which she has carried out extensive research. Dr Muter has published books for professionals and parents on early reading development and specific learning difficulties. She continues to be actively involved in assessing the learning profiles and educational needs of children with neurologically-based and developmental learning disorders.

She has carried out extensive collaborative (published) research into reading development and dyslexia with Professor Margaret Snowling, the UK’s leading authority on dyslexia and has published books for professionals and parents on early reading development and specific learning difficulties. She is the first author of a screening test for identifying young children at risk of reading problems. Dr Muter was a consultant psychologist at the Dyslexia Institute (now Dyslexia Action) for 20 years. She continues to be actively involved in working with and assessing the learning profiles and educational needs of children with neurologically-based and developmental learning disorders.

Dr Claudine Bowyer-Crane
Claudine gained her BSc Psychology at the University of York where she remained to complete her PhD with Professor Maggie Snowling looking at the relationship between inference generation and reading comprehension in children. She went on to work as a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at York, managing a project evaluating effective intervention for children with language difficulties. In addition, she heldthe position of research tutor in the Department of Clinical Psychology, University of Hull. She joined the team at Sheffield Hallam University as a Lecturer in 2008, and was appointed Senior Lecturer in 2009. In September 2012, she joined the Psychology in Education Research Centre at York as a Senior Lecturer.

For over ten years her research has focused primarily on designing and evaluating interventions to support language and literacy development. This work has targeted children at the early stages of schooling who have poorly developed oral language skills. More recently she has extended this research to explore the language and literacy development of children learning English as an Additional Language, and develop ways to support these children in the classroom. The number of children in UK primary schools learning English as an additional language is growing. A consistent achievement gap is found in national assessments of language and literacy between children learning EAL and their monolingual peers at the early stages of schooling. Support for these pupils is vital, however, a recent report revealed that research into effective interventions for children learning English as an Additional Language is lacking, particularly in a UK context. In addition, while it is widely recognised that children must be assessed in all of the languages they use in order to provide the most appropriate support, this poses significant challenges for practitioners and researchers.

Together with colleagues, Claudine has been working on a number of projects that attempt to tackle some of these issues. For example, she has recently launched the beta version of a newly developed task for assessing receptive vocabulary in a child’s home language which is designed to be used by practitioners and researchers working with children learning EAL. A recent paper provides an initial evaluation of the project and she is now seeking feedback in order to develop this app further. In addition, results from a recent RCT demonstrated that using a multi-contextual method of vocabulary instruction resulted in significant gains in knowledge of specific vocabulary taught as part of an intervention programme. However, no generalisation to broader language skills was found in this study. Importantly, focus groups with teachers involved in the project identified a number of challenges conducting interventions in busy school environments which have implications for future research of this nature. Claudine is currently developing work that investigates the relationship between language, reading comprehension and maths skills in children learning EAL