Written narations by 8- to 10-year-old Turkish pupils in flemish primary education: a follow-up of seven text features
Faculty of Social Sciences. Instructional and Educational Sciences
Journal of research in reading. - Nottingham
, p. 20-38
This semi-longitudinal study examined the development of narrative writing quality of young Turkish second language learners in mainstream Dutch-only education, and the impact of student-level and classroom-level predictors of narrative writing quality, using hierarchical linear modelling. Writing samples of 106 third graders and 111 fourth graders of seven Flemish primary schools were collected at the beginning and at the end of the school year. Measures included one holistic primary trait judgement, and six objective indices of text quality. Student-level predictors included age, SES and home language, while the classroom-level predictor focused on the home language pattern of the classroom. There was a significant mean growth for each index in each grade, but effect sizes differed from quite large for content and word level indices over moderate for sentence level indices to small for the text level index. Home language (Turkish) had a significant negative effect on all but one variables, particularly in Grade 4, while the negative effect of low SES was much more limited. A supplementary negative effect was found for homogeneity of classroom population. Implications of the study highlight the importance of student and classroom characteristics in writing achievement as well as the need to consider the poor performance of Turkish children.