This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Building Language and Literacy Foundations for L2 Learners in West Africa with Oral Vocabulary Instruction and Shared Reading of Predictable and Non-Predictable Stories in Picture Books




Smith, Kimberly

Type of Degree



Curriculum and Teaching


This study investigated the effects of shared reading on oral vocabulary development with 42 second language (L2) learners in Dakar, Sénégal. Participants, ranging from four to six years old, were taught French target words using predictable books, non-predicable books, and control activities of the typical local instructional practice of using coloring vocabulary worksheets with pictures and captions. For the five weeks of vocabulary study, students were evaluated in four domains (receptive vocabulary, semantic understanding, syntactic understanding and expressive vocabulary) at three intervals: weekly and with post-tests immediately after instruction ended and eight weeks after the immediate post-test. Multivariable linear regressions were performed to evaluate how well shared reading predicted oral vocabulary development. Findings demonstrated that shared reading, especially with predictable books, was associated with statistically significant gains on participants’ semantic understanding and positively predicted receptive, syntactic and expressive vocabulary knowledge. Further, whereas the control group’s mean outcome scores decreased over time, the reading group using predictable books demonstrated greater retention of L2 vocabulary than the other treatment group and the control group.