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Language Essentials for Teachers of Reading and Spelling (LETRS) Unit 1
Question 1: A study of relationships between letters and the sounds they represent; also used as a descriptor for code-based instruction
Question 2: conscious awareness of the individual speech sounds (consonants and vowels) in spoken syllables and the ability to consciously manipulate those sounds
Answer: phonemic awareness
Question 3: unit of pronunciation that is organized around a vowel; it may or may not have a consonant after the vowel
Question 4: writing system for representing language
Question 5: English orthography is morphophonemic, which means that it is a deep alphabetic writing system organized by both “sound-symbol” correspondences and morphology
Question 6: Smallest meaningful unit of language; it may be a word or a part of a word; it may be a single sound (plural /s/), one syllable (suffix -ful), or multiple syllables (prefix inter-)
Question 7: A word in one language that shares a common ancestor and common meanings with a word in another language. Many Spanish words, such as problema or digrama are cognates that are built around the same Latin and Greek prefixes, suffixes, or roots that English words also employ.
Question 8: the ability to think about and reflect on the structure of language itself; the invention of the alphabet was an achievement in metalinguistic awareness.
Answer: metalinguistic awareness
Question 9: The ability to translate a word from print to speech, usually by employing knowledge of sound-symbol correspondences
Question 1: Which is a characteristic of discourse in spoken language? a. It generally uses complete, well-formed sentences. b. It does not use paragraphs and tends to be disorganized. c. It may use unusual or topic-specific vocabulary. d. Its sounds are coarticulated in words.
Answer: b. It does not use paragraphs and tends to be disorganized.
Question 2: Which statement best describes the relative importance of oral reading fluency and verbal comprehension as factors in reading comprehension? a. As children get older, verbal comprehension becomes more important than oral reading fluency. b. Oral reading fluency and verbal comprehension are equally important throughout childhood and adolescence. c. As children get older, verbal comprehension matters less, and oral reading fluency becomes more important. d. Although oral reading fluency and verbal comprehension are both important, a child with problems in one domain can usually use the other domain to compensate.
Answer: a. As children get older, verbal comprehension becomes more important than oral reading fluency.
Question 3: How does the language system of pragmatics help us to understand why written language is more structured than spoken language? a. Written language is highly structured because we expect certain types of writing, such as stories, to follow established organizational conventions. b. Social context and nonverbal gestures help the listener understand spoken language, so there is less need for it to be highly structured. c. We must process written language in a highly structured way—reading letters that represent specific sounds and decoding them by reading from left to right. d. Spoken language is less structured because we tend to use sentences that are incomplete, run-ons, or otherwise ungrammatical.
Answer: b. Social context and nonverbal gestures help the listener understand spoken language, so there is less need for it to be highly structured.
Question 4: Which of these is an example of morphology? a. We use polite phrases like “excuse me” and “thank you” when addressing someone of higher social status. b. We recognize that the nonsense word “hufflelumps” could be a real word in English, but “ngapkez” could not. c. We tend to structure paragraphs with a main idea supported by details. d. We know the words unique, uniform, united, and universe all contain the root uni, meaning “one.”
Answer: d. We know the words unique, uniform, united, and universe all contain the root uni, meaning “one.”
Question 5: What adds to the challenge of becoming literate? Select all that apply. a. All meaning resides in the written words alone; there is no additional physical context or gestures, facial expressions, etc., to support meaning. b. Reading and writing require learning new forms of language, such as changes to sentence structure, discourse, and presentation of vocabulary and semantics. c. Written sentences are often less grammatical than spoken ones. d. Nothing; children already have been exposed to literature from an early age.
Answer: a. All meaning resides in the written words alone; there is no additional physical context or gestures, facial expressions, etc., to support meaning. b. Reading and writing require learning new forms of language, such as changes to sentence structure, discourse, and presentation of vocabulary and semantics.
Question 6: What is written or spoken language that is more stylistically formal than spoken conversational language – language that is most often used in academic discourse and text?
Answer: academic language
Question 7: What does the brain establish if a student is learning two languages simultaneously, as in bilingual households?
Answer: a separate neural system for each language
Question 8: T/F Listening comprehension may exceed reading comprehension, but the reverse is not true. One cannot understand by reading what one cannot understand by listening.
Question 9: Which of the following nonsense words COULD be an English word based on phonology? Select all that apply. a. brillig b. ngangmt c. pkumlekp d. martabastical e. tslenuts
Answer: a. brillig d. martabastical
Question 10: T/F “There are no set rules for how sounds are represented in written English beyond the correlation of one sound per symbol in the alphabet.”
Question 11: Which of the following groups of words are built around a similar morpheme? Select all that apply. a. civilian, civilization, civilized, civic b. uninterested, unit, uniform, unimportant c. above, abstract, abuse, about d. malware, malignant, malicious, malfeasance
Answer: a. civilian, civilization, civilized, civic d. malware, malignant, malicious, malfeasance
Question 12: T/F “Semantics helps us understand words’ meanings based on the context in which they occur.”
Question 13: Which sentence has the correct English syntax? a. Maria green peppers and red picked. b. Maria picked green and red peppers.
Answer: b. Maria picked green and red peppers.
Question 14: Which of the following is an example of discourse? Select all that apply. a. essay structure b. paragraph structure c. sentence structure d. story structure
Answer: a. essay structure b. paragraph structure d. story structure
Question 15: Which of the following is an example of pragmatics? Select all that apply. a. You address a stranger as “ma’am,” but not your best friend. b. When you tell a story, you try to build up excitement and suspense. c. You never use profanity at work but sometimes use it at home. d. If you accidentally jostle a stranger, you say “Excuse me.”
Answer: a. You address a stranger as “ma’am,” but not your best friend. c. You never use profanity at work but sometimes use it at home. d. If you accidentally jostle a stranger, you say “Excuse me.”
Question 1: Accomplished readers skip over words when they read.
Question 2: In the Simple View of Reading, you need to engage both word recognition and language comprehension for reading comprehension.
Question 3: Our brains read _____ to the left.
Answer: 7 – 9 letters
Question 4: Orthographic mapping
Answer: The mental process used to store words for immediate and effortless retrieval.
Question 5: When taking a spelling test, we engage the
Answer: orthographic processor
Question 6: The name for the mental dictionary in the phonological processing system.
Question 7: Used to match upper and lower case letters
Answer: orthographic processor
Question 8: Identifies the sounds in words
Answer: phonological processor
Question 9: “She found 3 bats in the trees.” This helps you determine if she found a bird or a piece of sporting equipment.
Answer: context processor
Question 10: The study of phonology and orthography
Question 1: A significant shortcoming of the Three Cueing Systems model, compared to the Four-Part Processing Model, is that it obscures the role of ____ in word recognition.
Answer: phonological processing
Question 2: Which best describes the activity of the reading brain in proficient readers, compared to beginning readers?
Answer: It is more automatic.
Question 3: Which of these does the language-comprehension component of the Reading Rope emphasize?
Answer: the importance of vocabulary development and understanding language structures
Question 4: The word-recognition component of the Reading Rope includes which subskills? Select all that apply.
Answer: Decoding, phonological awareness, sight recognition.
Question 5: Good readers do not require a large storehouse of sight words in their memory if they have highly developed photographic skills.
Question 1: What skill is most important for a student just learning to read?
Answer: accurate decoding
Question 2: A child sees the word savanna and sounds it out accurately. Which of Ehri’s phases is she in?
Answer: later alphabetic stage
Question 3: A child who responds, “Bow-wow!” when asked, “What is the first sound in a dog?” is in the:
Answer: prealphabetic stage.
Question 4: A child who sees the word inactive, and figures out that it means “not active,” is in the:
Answer: consolidated alphabetic stage.
Question 5: A child who comes across the new word house, but reads it as a horse, is in the:
Answer: early alphabetic stage.
Question 1: Distinguishing the cause of a reading problem is not always. Work about the causes can be made, but the most productive course of action for any risk student is to __ them.
Answer: possible, hypothesis, teach
Question 2: Among all English-speaking poor readers, at least _ to percent have trouble with accuracy and fluency which often originates in weaknesses with processing.
Answer: 70, 80, word recognition, phonological
Question 3: Word-recognition difficulties often co-occur with problems.
Answer: fluency, comprehension
Question 4: Students who have primary difficulty also have obvious trouble learning sound-symbol correspondences, sounding out words, and _. The term. applies to this group.
Answer: word recognition, spelling, dyslexia
Question 5: You can be _ and dyslexic.
Question 6: Dyslexia is a specific learning __ that is neurological in origin.
Question 7: Dyslexic difficulties typically result from a deficit in the component of language that is often unexpected in relation to other cognitive abilities and the provision of effective _.
Answer: phonological, classroom instruction
Question 8: Secondary consequences may include problems in reading and reduced reading experience that can impede the growth of background knowledge.
Answer: comprehension, vocabulary
Question 9: Up to 25 percent who are poor at word recognition are slow at word reading and text reading but can and _ sounds.
Answer: segment, blend, orally
Question 10: These students will words even after seeing them several times. They tend to spell __ but not accurately.
Answer: sound out, phonetically
Question 11: For this subgroup, the nature of their relative weakness is still debated by reading scientists. Some argue that the problem is primarily one of timing and _ speed. Others propose that there is a specific deficit within the _ system that affects the storage and recall of exact letter sequences.
Answer: processing, orthographic processing
Question 12: This processing speed/orthographic subgroup generally has better outcomes than students with measurable impairments of _.
Answer: phonological processing
Question 13: 10-15 percent of all poor readers appear to decode and read individual words better than they can the meanings of passages. These poor readers are distinguished from dyslexic students because they can read words _ and quickly they can. Students on the spectrum also fit into this reading profile.
Answer: comprehend, accurately, spell, autism
Question 14: English Learners with reading problems often fit the profile of better word reading than others.
Answer: reading comprehension
Question 15: Phonological deficit
Answer: implicating a core problem in the phonological system of oral language
Question 16: Processing speed/orthographic processing deficit
Answer: affects the speed and accuracy of printed word recognition (also called naming speed problem or fluency problem)
Question 17: Comprehension deficit
Answer: often coincides with the first two types of problems, but specifically found in students with social-linguistic disabilities (e.g. autism), vocabulary weaknesses, generalized language learning disorders, and learning difficulties that affect abstract reasoning and logical thinking;
Question 18: ELs may seem to fit the comprehension deficit profile because they have not mastered English.
Answer: vocabulary, syntax
Question 19: A student with a prominent and specific weakness in either phonological or orthographic (naming-speed) processing, is said to have a deficit in word.
Answer: single, recognition
Question 20: A student with a combination of phonological and naming-speed deficits, is said to have a deficit. These students are more common than those with a deficit and are also the most to remediate.
Answer: double, single, difficult
Question 21: Possible indicators of specific language comprehension difficulties
Answer: inattention to teacher talk, low verbal output, low scores on tests of vocabulary that do not require reading, lack of improvement in comprehension if a reading selection is read to the individual, inability to tell the difference between main ideas and supporting details during listening or reading; confusion about the meanings and uses of pronouns, prepositions, and space/time concepts and human relationships; literal interpretations of abstract language
Question 22: EL’s word recognition will be slowed and limited simply because they have fewer English words in their _.
Answer: phonological lexicons
Question 23: ELs is often slow because they are doing double the work — they are deciphering English and mentally translating back and forth between English and their _ in order to make sense of the passage.
Answer: oral reading, first language
Question 24: Studies have shown that students’ brain activation patterns can be “normalized” if remediation for word-level reading impairments is _, and.
Answer: early, intensive, effectively designed
Question 25: Difficulty with the speed and accuracy of printed word recognition; also sometimes called a naming-speed problem or fluency problem
Answer: Orthographic Processing Deficit
Question 26: Vocabulary weaknesses, generalized language learning disorders, and learning difficulties that affect abstract reasoning and logical thinking
Answer: Comprehension Deficit
Question 27: A core problem in the processing system that works with the sounds of oral language
Answer: Phonological Deficit
Question 28: Dyslexia is mainly a reversal issue that involves seeing letters and/or numbers backward.
Question 29: One main characteristic of dyslexia is difficulty with word recognition.
Question 30: Dyslexic students may achieve higher scores on comprehension tests that do not involve reading.
Question 31: The term “dyslexia” should not be used in IEP documents.
Question 32: Dyslexic students who are said to have a “double deficit” have weaknesses in which two areas?
Answer: phonological processing and naming-speed processing
Question 33: A student with dyslexia may also be intellectually gifted.
Question 34: Students who are slow at word reading and text reading, but can segment and blend sounds orally, typically have better outcomes than students with phonological processing deficits.
Question 35: Dyslexia is a term often applied to a large subset of poor readers. These readers’ difficulties with accurate, fluent word recognition originate primarily with deficits in which of the following?
Answer: Phonological Processing
Question 36: Which of the following can pose challenges for readers who are English Learners (ELs)? Select all that apply.
Answer: Compared to native English speakers, ELs have fewer English words in their phonological lexicons. ELs may encounter passages that do not align well with their culture and background knowledge. When they read, ELs must perform two tasks at once: deciphering words and translating content between English and their first language.
Question 37: About 10-15 percent of poor readers can decode and read individual words quickly and well and can spell them accurately—yet struggle to comprehend the meanings of passages. This profile is typical of students with which coexisting disorder?
Answer: autism and autism spectrum disorders
Question 1: Once children are _ – which happens very early – they do not catch up unless intervention is intensive, timely, and well-informed.
Question 2: __ is a type of assessment that has the following characteristics; all students once per year, tests have time limits, silent and independent reading, passage comprehension, scores are reported as percentiles or NCE, and states may develop their own or use National.
Question 3: __ is a type of assessment that has the following characteristics; predict fluent reading by 3rd grade, word-reading abilities are strong predictors of passage reading, selected students should receive more in-depth surveys of strengths and weaknesses, screening should be brief.
Question 4: _ is a type of assessment with the following characteristics; formative assessments, brief & measure progress towards a goal, forms allow for frequent administration, given 1-3 weeks and determine the effectiveness of instruction.
Answer: Progress Monitoring
Question 5: __ is a type of assessment with the following characteristics; given only to students at risk, longer than screening test, detailed information about student mastery, and informed instruction and aspects of treatment.
Answer: Diagnostic Survey
Question 6: – ___ tests refers to standardized tests that are designed to compare and rank test-takers in relation to each other.
Question 7: __ are used to predict who is most likely to pass the high-stakes outcome tests given at the end of each grade. Examples are; letter-naming, phoneme segmentation, grapheme-phoneme correspondence, word reading lists, nonsense word reading, spelling and phonetic spelling accuracy, oral passage reading fluency (mid-1st), and Maze passage reading (3rd and beyond).
Answer: Screening Measures
Question 8: questions are a good early indicator of language comprehension.
Answer: Read Aloud
Question 9: Valid measure actually measures what was intended is called….
Answer: construct validity
Question 10: Valid measures that correspond well to other known measures is called…
Answer: concurrent validity
Question 11: Predicts with accuracy how students are likely to perform on an accountability measure is called…
Answer: predictive validity
Question 1: Which of these literacy skills have students typically mastered by the end of third grade? Select all that apply. a. advanced phonemic awareness b. Greek-derived morphemes c. inflectional morphology d. fluent recognition of word families (rime patterns)
Answer: a. advanced phonemic awareness c. inflectional morphology d. fluent recognition of word families (rime patterns)
Question 2: Which of the following is not an area of inquiry to include in a comprehensive diagnostic assessment of a potential reading disorder? a. spelling b. handwriting c. single-word decoding d. social interactions
Answer: d. social interactions
Question 3: T/F Many screening measures can be considered diagnostic since they provide extremely detailed data about a student’s skills in particular literacy domains.
Question 4: If a student needs work on phonics and decoding, what kind of informal diagnostic assessment would provide the most useful information on how to help this student with these skills? a. a spelling inventory to show which features of English spelling the student has mastered b. a word-reading survey to show which sound-symbol correspondences the student knows and which ones still need practice c. a vocabulary test to show student understanding of word meanings in context d. a test of reading comprehension to show how well the student can answer questions about a grade-level text
Answer: b. a word-reading survey to show which sound-symbol correspondences the student knows and which ones still need practice
Question 5: Cody is in first grade. He almost never raises his hand to participate in class discussions. When called on, he replies very briefly. He tends to use vague words like stuff and rarely uses full sentences. During decoding exercises, he reads words accurately and easily recognizes common patterns; he is a good speller. When he reads stories aloud, he reads fairly accurately but in an expressionless monotone. Which assessment would be most likely to yield valuable information about Cody? a. administering a phonics survey b. reading a story to him and having him orally retell it c. examining samples of his writing d. administering a timed oral reading fluency assessment
Answer: b. reading a story to him and having him orally retell it
Question 6: These tests inform instruction by telling how well instruction is working—that is, how at-risk students are responding to instruction. These formative assessments, typically administered every 1-3 weeks, focus on specific targeted skills. Teachers can use them to determine the effectiveness of a given program or approach.
Question 7: These measures help predict which students are at risk for reading failure and how they are likely to perform on outcome assessments by measuring their performance against established benchmarks. These measures, such as DIBELS® or AIMSweb®, focus on foundational skills and are administered several times a year in the early grades. Because they are brief, low-cost measures that provide extremely useful information, they are highly efficient.
Question 8: These surveys inform teachers’ work with at-risk readers. This category includes informal diagnostics teachers use to assess students’ academic knowledge or skills in a particular area (e.g., a developmental spelling inventory or handwriting sample), as well as formal, specialized testing used to determine whether a student fits the criteria for a specific developmental disorder (e.g., an assessment to determine whether and where a child falls on the autism spectrum).
Answer: Diagnostic surveys
Question 9: These assessments assess the overall effectiveness of instruction given to a large student population—for example, all students within a state. These high-stakes, summative reading assessments are usually administered at the end of grade 3 or 4. Because they are often normed, they can show how an individual is doing relative to norms and help in comparing groups.
Answer: outcome assessments
Question 10: What does diagnosing mean?
Answer: Diagnosing means that we need ways to identify what’s wrong with poor readers.