About the CREATE Project
Many students reach the middle grades (4-8) lacking the language and literacy skills required to access grade level content instruction and texts. However, there are few programs that are designed for adolescent struggling readers (Snow & Biancarosa, 2004). English learners must also contend with learning and reading in a second language, and at these critical grades, these students lag behind their English proficient peers in content area knowledge as seen on the NAEP (National Center for Education Statistics, 2011). Additionally, when English learners reach high school, these students have higher drop-out rates than their English proficient peers (Chapman, Laird, Ifill, & KewalRamani, 2011). Despite the unique strengths and needs of English learners in the middle grades, there is little research on effective instruction for these students (Snow & Biancarosa, 2004). The Center for Research on the Educational Achievement and Teaching of English Language Learners (CREATE) had a focused program of research designed to address
the critical challenge of improving educational outcomes of English learners in content area classrooms by
- enhancing the empirical research base for readers in Grades 4–8,
- developing and testing effective interventions that promote content knowledge and language and literacy development simultaneously,
- investigating the features of instruction and scaffolds that facilitate learning for English learners in content area classrooms (e.g., oral language development, shared interactive reading, direct vocabulary instruction, traditional text v. modified text),
- designing, testing, and delivering professional development that ensures that teachers implement effective classroom practices to help English learners achieve high standards,
- and implementing a comprehensive school-wide intervention delivering curricula, professional development, and coaching sessions for content area teachers.