The alternative education field lacks a common definition and has a major divide between the differing philosophies of alternative programs; little empirical evidence is available to identify the components necessary to create effective alternative educational programs. Tremendous growth in the availability of alternative programs in the United States over the past several decades, however, illustrates continuing demand for such programs as well as the need for research on the characteristics that constitute effective alternative programs. In this article, the authors study exemplary alternative programs in 3 racially and economically diverse communities to characterize the school climate as viewed by the students and the staff. At this relatively early stage in the field of alternative education, it is essential to examine the similarities, as well as any differences, in the social climate of highly effective alternative programs and to consider their potential relationship with student academic and behavioral success. Furthermore, it is important to recognize how these findings might be one foundation for future inquiry and research on alternative education. [PUBLICATION ABSTRACT]
The present study aims to advance the extant research base by evaluating the implementation and effectiveness of an academic vocabulary program designed for use in mainstream middle school classrooms with high proportions of language minority learners. The quasi-experimental, mixed-methods study was conducted in 21 classes (13 treatment matched to 8 control) in seven middle schools in a large district, with 476 sixth-grade students (346 language minority learners, 130 native English speakers). Classroom observations and teacher logs indicated the 18-week program was implemented with good fidelity and that the approach contrasted sharply with the standard district English language arts (ELA) curriculum. Multilevel modeling indicated that the program resulted in significant effects on several aspects of vocabulary knowledge, including meanings of taught words (d = 0.39; p < .0001), morphological awareness (d = 0.20; p = .0003), and the word meanings as presented in expository text (d = 0.20; p = .0227). The program also yielded marginally significant, but promising effects on a depth of word knowledge measure (d = 0.15; p =0.0830) and a norm-referenced measure of reading comprehension (d = 0.15; p = .0568). No effects were found on a norm-referenced vocabulary measure. These effects were comparable for language minority learners and their native-English-speaking classmates. Data from teachers shed light on the challenges of meeting students' diverse instructional needs and the roles of curriculum and professional networks in building instructional capacity. The findings show promise in developing effective multifaceted vocabulary instruction for implementation by ELA teachers in middle school classrooms with high numbers of language minority learners.
In urban middle schools, educators find it challenging to meet the literacy needs of the many struggling readers in their classrooms, including language-minority (LM) learners and students from low-income backgrounds. One strategy for improving these students' reading comprehension is to teach essential academic vocabulary in a meaningful, engaging, and systematic way. This article describes the development and evaluation of an academic vocabulary curriculum for sixth-grade mainstream classrooms with large numbers of LM learners who struggle with comprehension. In a study conducted in 21 sixth-grade classrooms, the curriculum was found to be effective both in improving students' vocabulary and reading comprehension and in supporting teachers' learning about how to teach academic vocabulary. Seven universal learnings for all classrooms are described and illustrated with specific examples of activities, perspectives from teachers, and insights from students, drawn from the study.
The article begins with a question about the value of revitalising the equation between sexual/intimate violence and terrorism in the current neoliberal/post-feminist political and epistemological landscape. We argue that the intensifying international interest in sexual violence, and an accompanying hyper-visual imagery, is implicated in the cauterisation of critical thought about sexual violence. We offer the more mobile and expansive concept of sexed violence to “unthink” dominant narratives that reproduce heteronormativity and white, Western hegemony. Through an analysis of the film Unwatchable, we consider why non-white raced bodies consistently materialise as less “comprehensible” as violatable than white bodies. We further suggest that a move to sexed violence can help to think more critically about both sexual violence and feminism.
In the spring of 2001 the hilly uplands immediately northwest of the modern city of Durres were for the first time investigated using the techniques of intensive surface survey. In total, an area of six square kilometers was explored and twenty-nine sites were defined, most of them new. Remains of Greek antiquity were plentiful and include unpublished inscriptions and graves. One site may be the location of a previously unknown Archaic temple. Included in this article are descriptions of the areas investigated, a list of sites, and a catalogue of the most diagnostic artifacts recovered. Patterns of settlement and land use are discussed and compared to those recorded by other surveys in Albania.