Using Experience Books to Foster the Narrative Skills of English Learners The need to address the language and literacy development of children from culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) backgrounds continues to rise with the increasing number of English learners (ELs) in schools throughout the United States. One area of concern is the need for culturally sensitive methods of assessment and intervention ... Article
Article  |   October 23, 2017
Using Experience Books to Foster the Narrative Skills of English Learners
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Clariebelle Gabas
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Mary Claire Wofford
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Carla Wood
    Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
  • Disclosures
    Disclosures ×
  • Financial: Clariebelle Gabas and Mary Wofford were supported by the Bilingual Oral Language and Literacy Development (BOLLD) grant, funded by the U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs (H325D140068). Views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not represent the views of the granting agency. Carla Wood has no relevant financial interests to disclose.
    Financial: Clariebelle Gabas and Mary Wofford were supported by the Bilingual Oral Language and Literacy Development (BOLLD) grant, funded by the U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education Programs (H325D140068). Views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not represent the views of the granting agency. Carla Wood has no relevant financial interests to disclose.×
  • Nonfinancial: Clariebelle Gabas, Mary Wofford, and Carla Wood have no relevant nonfinancial interests to disclose.
    Nonfinancial: Clariebelle Gabas, Mary Wofford, and Carla Wood have no relevant nonfinancial interests to disclose.×
Article Information
Development / Cultural & Linguistic Diversity / School-Based Settings / Normal Language Processing / Language Disorders / Attention, Memory & Executive Functions / Part 2
Article   |   October 23, 2017
Using Experience Books to Foster the Narrative Skills of English Learners
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, October 2017, Vol. 2, 61-70. doi:10.1044/persp2.SIG16.61
History: Received June 1, 2017 , Revised July 29, 2017 , Accepted September 3, 2017
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, October 2017, Vol. 2, 61-70. doi:10.1044/persp2.SIG16.61
History: Received June 1, 2017; Revised July 29, 2017; Accepted September 3, 2017

The need to address the language and literacy development of children from culturally and linguistically diverse (CLD) backgrounds continues to rise with the increasing number of English learners (ELs) in schools throughout the United States. One area of concern is the need for culturally sensitive methods of assessment and intervention for ELs with language disorders. Oral language skills are widely considered an essential component of later reading success. Although narratives are commonly used to foster children's oral language skills, narrative development in children from CLD backgrounds can be highly variable. Broader socialization and cultural practices can influence and shape the way children tell stories (Melzi, Schick, & Kennedy, 2011). One approach to facilitate the development of narrative skills in ELs with language disorders is the use of experience books, which are personalized stories that depict daily routines or meaningful events situated from the child's perspective. Experience books can provide a natural foundation of rich linguistic interactions between children and caregivers, increase children's exposure to print and enjoyment of books, and encourage family involvement. The following tutorial will guide speech-language pathologists on how to adapt experience books as culturally sensitive tools to help meet the needs and interests of CLD children and families.

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