CELL: Annotated Bibliography

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Echevarria, J., Vogt, M., & Short, D. (2007). Making content comprehensible for English Learners: The SIOP model. New York: Pearson.

The Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP) is a scientifically-based model in making content comprehensible for English language learners. The model covers curriculum, assessment, and instruction in terms of how teachers and learners negotiate between both content and language goals. The model includes a 30-item checklist that includes a Likert scale that ranges from “highly evident” to “NA”, or non-applicable (p. 209). The authors conclude that by using this model, English language learners will adjust faster to mainstream classes and thus be more successful academically than those who have teachers that fail to use the SIOP model. The SIOP model offers a framework to build upon to determine a set of “best practices” that are applicable to the English-as-a-foreign language classroom. Although the SIOP model relates specifically to content courses, the same principles also relate to foreign students learning to build understandings and language skills in a foreign country. Ultimately, the SIOP model will only be used as a basis for creating a questionnaire that provides quantitative data that will be used concurrently with qualitative data in determining how teachers establish goals and develop personal learning networks in order to meet individual goals. Moreover, the SIOP model will be fused with the Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) in bilingual and multilingual education approach along with general educational approaches that are scientifically based in terms of meeting a certain degree of what can be referred to as “best practices”.

Mehisto, P., Marsh, D., & Frigols, M. (2008). Uncovering CLIL: Content and language integrated learning in Bilingual and Multilingual Education. Oxford: Macmillan Education.

The authors of content and language integrated learning (CLIL) seek to prove how integrating academic content, an additional language skill, and learning strategies can better provide a more complete learning experience for the English language learner. Whereas the SIOP model is more directive, CLIL takes a more holistic approach in promoting both target and hosting languages and cultures. The principles that the CLIL model include “cognition”, “community”, “content”, and “communication” (p. 31). Ultimately, CLIL sets out to connect students, content, language, etc., inspire students, deliver content, language, and learning skills, and advance learning (pp. 211-212). Like the SIOP model, CLIL will be used to formulate a framework to quantify teachers’ knowledge (i.e., applying a survey) and recalling what they currently do in the classroom. CLIL goes beyond the SIOP model in advancing a more ontological approach to learning as opposed to strictly adhering to an epistemological one by promoting the feelings of the learner as part of the learning process. Also, CLIL steers away from the ubiquitous notion of applying Bloom’s Taxonomy to curriculum, assessment, and instruction by means of presenting a list of over 25 non-hierarchical performance verbs that have emerge through the learning experience in a more expressive way.

Wiggins, G. & McTighe, J. (2005). Understanding by design. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervison and Curriculum Development.

The authors claim that higher academic achievement and learning in general can be achieved through the pursuit of six facets of understandings: can explain can interpret, can apply, has perspective, has empathy, and has self-knowledge (pp. 85-104). Based on over 30 years of research related to cognitive science, their approach to learning is heavily based on Dewey’s experiential learning as a means of pursuing big ideas or key concepts. Like CLIL, developing the six facets of understandings resembles applying the list of 25 non-hierarchical performance verbs also through a more emergent and complex way. And like the SIOP model and CLIL, learning objectives will be expressed in terms of understandings, knowledge (thus replacing the word content), and skills (including both cognitive and metacognitive skills). So instead of looking a second-language learning (e.g., learning English in the United States) through the integration of content and language, the focus now becomes looking at foreign-language learning (e.g., learning English in Mexico) through the integration of understandings and language. A survey relating to the notion of understandings, CLIL, and the SIOP model will help determine what teachers are doing in the classroom, stated in quantitative terms. CLIL and the SIOP model are specific to applied linguistics (albeit mainly second-language learning), but the concept of developing the six facets of understandings applies to general education and is similar in logic as there is an integration of understandings, knowledge, and skill (i.e., language) necessary to develop the whole person (e.g., epistemology and ontology).

Sergiovanni, T. (2005). Strengthening the hearbeat: Leading and learning together in schools. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Leading and learning together in schools originates from a particular mindscape that fosters “social capital”, “community”, and “relational trust” (p. 21). Teachers need support and should have opportunities to build the relationships or ties required to achieve both individual and collective goals. The book places mindscapes through a reverse sense of rationality – “ means-ways-ends” (p. 39) – that encourages teachers to pursue individual competencies first as the ends emerge through the learning process. Community support, virtues, and leading as an entitlement are central themes that emphasize equally that change comes from the bottom-up and top-down. The perspective of creating a distributed leadership versus shared leadership is central to establishing the worldview needed for the study. The viewpoint that most people have limited rationality or that rationality is a result of various levels of reciprocity is also key to establishing connectivism or connective knowledge as a learning theory in its own right.

Mehra, A., Smith, B., Dixon, A., & Robertson, B. (2006). Distributed leadership in teams: The network of leadership perceptions and team performance. The Leadership Quarterly, Vol. 17, Issue 3, 232-245. doi: 10.1016/j.leaqua.2006.02.003

This study used a social network analysis to investigate the effectiveness of distributed leadership among work teams. The authors performed a separate analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) to predict whether distributed leadership groups performed better than traditional ones. “The findings show that distributed leadership networks are not necessarily associated with higher team performance. However, leadership networks that show a distributed-coordinated structure are associated with higher team performance than traditional leader-centered leadership networks and distributed-fragmented leadership networks” (p.241). This article shows how distributed leadership can have a positive impact on team building which is relevant to building team-teaching groups as well. Although this study focuses primarily on the social, similar principles can be used to view the effects social connections have to cognitive connections. In terms of professional development among teachers, now social contacts or personal learning networks impact their own learning.

Atay, D. (2008). Teacher research for professional development. ELT Journal, Vol. 62/2, pp. 139-147. doi:10.1093/elt/ccl053

This study used action research to provide English-as-a-foreign language teachers opportunities to conduct research, reflect, and collaborative on their teaching practices. Through narratives (i.e., a qualitative study), teachers shared their ideas, beliefs, and understandings regarding their respective research topics they were pursuing. The authors found that professional development based on a bottom-up approach “proved to have positive effects on the professional competence of the teachers” (p. 146). This study shows how a teacher-centered approach to professional development is preferred over those that are more directive in nature (i.e., professional development workshops that are a one-time information disbursement with little practical use in the classroom), but that such a study can be daunting for those educators who are not used to conducting action research. Moverover, the strict adherence to qualitative data while the research is also the author can make for a possible subjective outcome. The strength of this study is that the teachers themselves were directly involved with their own investigations.